Posts Tagged ‘online newspaper’

Are you a journalist / writer with a passion for politics? Do you care about this country?

Sunday, October 24th, 2010

bandeBande Mataram. Samachar Darpan. Kesari. Ghadar. Somprakash. Sudharak. Young India. Akali. Pratap. These are the names of the newspapers which played an important role during India’s freedom struggle. Printed on paper, they were the mouthpieces of the revolutionaries. The newspapers during those days brought people of similar ideologies together; a vision of free India and a burning desire to end theĀ oppressiveĀ rule of British empire.

Today in free India, the newspapers have been taken over by business houses — there is far more advertising and commercial content being peddled to the masses than before. From soft-porn, cleaving-doting images of celebrities to pure gadgetry which is out of the reach of the common masses. The serious issues of corruption, nepotism, bribery, lack of empathy towards the needs of the common is overlooked by larger parlays of ministerial horse-trading. Sometimes, it takes time to figure out for whom the day’s paper was edited.

On the flip-side, the exciting part is that world is coming full-circle. Internet is bringing people together and giving choices. Internet gives an opportunity to connect, collaborate and bring together a voice which can be amplified several 100 times. US President Barrack Obama’s online campaign has shown us how voices from individuals can easily become a movement. It also shows that a web-only political news website like TalkingPointsMemo can win awards for it’s unbiased coverage on legal, political and social matters which are ignored by the main-stream media. The power of Internet also shows in the form of Huffington Post, where it is now a leading destination of social, political and business commentary from 3,000 eminent writers from politicians to policy experts to celebs.

During the Indian freedom movement, Bhagat Singh used to edit the Amritsar newspaper named Akali and contributed regularly to several others. In one such he wrote (edited) :

“The people generally get accustomed to the established order of things and begin to tremble at the very idea of a change. It is this lethargical spirit that needs be replaced by the revolutionary spirit. Otherwise degeneration gains the upper hand and the whole humanity is led stray by the reactionary forces. Such a state of affiars leads to stagnation and paralysis in human progress. The spirit of Revolution should always permeate the soul of humanity, so that the reactionary forces may not accumulate (strength) to check its eternal onward march. Old order should change, always and ever, yielding place to new…”

India is at the inflection point of revolution; we are seeing excesses of everything. Just like the days of British Raj, one sector of the society has access to the necessities (and more) of life, whereas a large part is devoid. The revolution can be brought only by stitching of information and recirculating the same to the masses in turn bringing awareness.

I believe with the power of Internet, there is a need to create a new mouthpiece of the common man, just like Mahatama Gandhi did with ‘Young India’ or Bipinchandra Pal did with ‘Bande Mataram’. We at Morpheus want to play a role in this change; if you are a passionate writer or a journalist and think you can persevere for next 5 years; away from the niceties of a mainstream media publication, and create such voice online for 999 million Indians; I would love to talk to you.

Image credit: Sri Aurobindo Society