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  • Writer's pictureRoshan Dhanasekar

Why I Chose Not To Pursue Journalism Despite A Degree And An Innate Passion Towards It

When I was in high school, I knew what I wanted to become - a journalist. Despite going through different phases in life and wanting to do a lot more, I knew journalism was my calling as I loved the art of writing and storytelling. I knew how it felt to have power - the power of letting people be informed about the real story of the real world. But things took a different path and I derailed throughout my study.

The pressure to do something ‘real’ has always been from my parents. They wanted me to pursue a degree which would ultimately guarantee a job with high pay and secured life. But I was a rebel and wanted to pursue what I was passionate about. Though I have an undergraduate degree in commerce, which I did for my parents, I was sure that I’ll take up journalism for my masters and follow my dreams. But things took a different path and I derailed throughout my study.

I have always believed that media and journalism had the power, to tell the truth, and let the people be informed. I was a strong believer of the law and ethics that were put forth me and I imbibed it. But things changed.

Things changed as they taught us about privacy and how a public figure’s personal life shouldn’t be the concern of media houses and publications. Things changed when I started learning what yellow journalism was. Things changed as I understood how the industry has become completely commercial and news weren’t reported to inform people, but to gauge them to a platform and increase their ratings or traffic. Things changed when people consumed newspapers and news channels for the gossip that was lurking in the air than the news that concerned people of the country. Things changed.

For those reading this, it might feel like I was naive and didn’t know how the industry worked. And maybe that’s true. I was naive, but I was interested in the art of truth-telling rather than reporting a Page 3 gossip.

After seeing the what’s happening right now in the country, and how resources are being used in the field of media and journalism, it’s saddening to learn how authentic news reporting has gone to dogs. People who spoke up and stood for what’s right disappeared into thin air and what remains now is the mechanism of how to churn money and build TRP. I believe people have taken the freedom of press too serious that they started sharing everything but knowledge and truth.

As I vent out, I realise that the problem is not just with one. Journalism has derailed from its path because they understood the demand. They understood what most people wanted, which in turn enabled them to earn their big bucks.

The father of our nation said, “be the change you wish to see in the world.” Though a lot of us resonate with this and follow-through, we have collectively failed to be the change that we wished to see in the world. And if this is the change that we are looking for, then I don’t know what to say or rather have words to express how and what I feel.

I just hope that one day the perspective that’s put forth in front of us changes and that one day, you and I will be able to learn the truth from media.

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