Wednesday, December 26, 2012

How good is sensational exposure of crime?

When media highlights incidents of corruption, mismanagement, crimes and other social evils it is doing its rightful job for the benefit of the society and citizens. But there is a question the media- managers have to regularly ask themselves – 'Does their presentation effectively serve, as they planned, the citizen and the country or not?’ If they find that it is not bringing the desired results, should they not pause and find out why, and then be bold enough to make necessary adjustments?
In the prevailing state of affairs of law and order in the country, the perpetrators of crime get scot-free due to wide spread corruption at all levels. The politicians and bureaucrats are hardly brought to justice. The criminals enjoy all facilities even when in custody or prison. In such situation, when a crime is exposed and highlighted repeatedly, as is being done for TRP, does it really bring the criminal and the nexus between crime and corrupt administration to justice? No.
Now try to assess the impact of the repeated exposition by the media on the society. Instead of spreading the message that crime is being reduced and criminals are being punished through the exposure, it conveys that criminals are not punished in our system, no matter how strongly and vividly they are exposed. It asserts more emphatically in the minds of the common man that criminals with money and reach cannot be harmed. They are beyond the reach of the law and order machinery. This message acts as free publicity for the crime nexus to draw new apprentices from the petty criminals as well as the unemployed. It encourages the petty criminals to become bold and graduate to the glamorous level of Dons. It entices the youth in their formative years, to drift towards crime by breaking the yet-to-mature allegiance to ethical codes. If a proper study of crime scene in the past two decades is done, it would be no surprise if it is revealed that sensationalizing the crime has educated the criminals. It has in fact pushed even the fence sitters to choose the profession of crime. In these times when there are professional schools (terrorist camps) for training criminals, such sensationalizing proves detrimental to the social cause.
Why not consult social psychologists and other experts to produce a proper and responsible mix of sensational exposure and sane advise for the benefit of society?

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