Independent journalist and educator, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta engaged IIM-A students on a debate about ethics in Indian television news on July 16, 2012. The session organized by Public Policy SIG of IIM-A started with the screening of Paranjoy Guha’s acclaimed documentary film “Grabbing Eyeballs: What’s Unethical about Indian Television News”. This was followed by a short lecture by Paranjoy Guha on ethical problems in the Indian TV News industry.
Apart from juggling his many roles in the media, Paranjoy Guha Thakurta is also a visiting professor in IIM Ahmedabad where he teaches a course in Media Studies. The crowd was rapt with attention throughout the 32 minute documentary film. The event and the documentary film revolved around the ill effects of ‘over-competition’ in the TV News Industry. “Information has to be viewed as a public good. So market failure has to be addressed immediately,” Paranjoy argued. He further criticized the archaic TRP rating systems and urged for an independent regulator to resolve the issue. The discussion turned lively as students discussed their questions and concerns with Paranjoy. “It was great hearing Paranjoy Guha,” said Maruthi Raj, a second year PGP student. “He put his finger right on the core issue plaguing our media. Thanks to him, we were able to make sense of an otherwise chaotic industry,” he added.