शनिवार, 25 अगस्त 2012

MEDIA - General

Archive for MEDIA - General

Coimbatore Press Club

Coimbatore Press Club keeping pace with changing times
Roshni Karthikeyan, I MJMC, PSGCAS.
The Coimbatore Press Club (CPC) which was formed in 1995 as a Journalist Welfare Trust mainly to fight against the social evils is updating itself and keeping pace with the fast growing society.
This Club which is the association of various media people in the city, is making itself more conspicuous especially to the community of students and people interested in the field of Journalism- both print and broadcast.
Although the Club registers only people already working in the field of Mass Media, the aim of the Club is to also encourage students and upcoming professionals to enter the field. In order to make this goal come true, the Club has taken its first initiative this year by means of announcing a Photography Competition, ‘Inaivizhi 2012’, for students doing Media Studies over all colleges in the city. The competition is to be held on the 18th and 19th of August, 2012 at the PSGIM Conventional Hall, in celebrating the ‘World Photography Day’. A workshop is also conducted as a kind of a reach out programme to enable students gain some interest in photography.  Mr. Ratan Kumar, the Treasurer of the Club, said, “This is the first time we are organising such a competition and we hope to do the like in the future.” He also added that, “The club has launched a website that contains details about the inception of the club, its governing members, executive members, etc. along with details of upcoming Press Meets, and other news regarding the Club.”
On the whole, the Club intends to maintain an interactive setup with and between its members by not only updating itself with the technological changes happening in the society, but also improving the connections with the community of students who intend to enter the field sooner or later.
Archana Manivannan, I MJMC, PSG CAS
In Coimbatore there are many  press clubs, but Coimbatore Press Club is old and gold.
The Coimbatore press club was started at 1995. It was started by senior members from the print and electronic media. Besides, the club voices the right of expression and brings various government welfare measures accessible to the beneficiaries. In 1995 this club had only 16 members,  now ( July 2012) it has more than 180 members. Coimbatore press club conducted various medical camps and helped in students education too.
As the club is an association of intellectuals from the field of journalism, it often conducts symposiums on various topics of social interest. Coimbatore Press Club conducts press meets, inviting people from all the walks of the society. Coimbatore Press Club also conducts various meetings to stress social and religious harmony.
Every year they conduct election to select the governing members. The present office bearers are:  S.Kamalakannan - President,  C.Sujay Anand and B.Kinggam are the vice presidents, K. Rathan kumar -  Treasurer. Velusamy is the General secretary.
The press council members are divided into three categories. Ordinary, Associated and Guest members. Full time journalists are ordinary members .Part time and freelancers are associated members. Retired journalists, media professors are guest members.
Address: Coimbatore Press Club, 
No.5, Corporation Shopping Complex,
 Upplilipalayam, Avinashi Road,
 Ph: 0422 - 2303077. 
e-mail: coimbatorepressclub@gmail.com   
web: www.coimbatorepressclub.com
17 year old Coimbatore Press Club nascent for students!
The city’s press club serves little purpose for the freshers; concentrates on the working journalists.
Anusha Venkat, Coimbatore
July 31, 2o12.
The Coimbatore Press Club (CPC) that serves to be a refreshing community for all the journalists across Coimbatore, serves little purpose for the budding journalists of the city. Since the time of their establishment in the year 1995, CPC has been working for the unity and safety of all the members of the press.
“We give membership only to those journalists who are working as reporters or camera men and who come under the ‘Working Journalist Act 1955’. Students who are working as interns cannot be members of this press club,” said the Treasurer of the club, Mr.Ratan Kumar who is working as a camera person for Lotus News.
The press club is organizing a photography competition in the near future for which they have invited many colleges across the city. This however is their first initiative to encourage cub journalists. “We have organized many programmes in the past for the family members of the journalists who are members in this club. This time we came together to organize a photography competition for students from all educational backgrounds whose work would be judged by eminent people from the industry,” added the Treasurer.
The club mainly functions to conduct press meets and to add some rejoice for the media persons, giving them a slight break from their hectic schedules.  But it might be even more beneficial if budding journalists are given exposure with the help of the experiences of the club members!
Objectives of the club
 Mohammed Ashik, I MJMC
The main Objective of this club is to work towards the upliftment and welfare of the society. For the welfare of the families of media persons, Coimbatore Press Club is conducting medical camps in association with the leading hospitals of Coimbatore.
Other activities of the club are to conduct symposiums on related to social interest.
During election campaigns, Coimbatore Press Club records the poll promises made by contestants from different political parties by bringing them together as common.
The duties of Coimbatore Press Club also includes, conducting press meets. Inviting people from all religions and castes, Coimbatore Press Club also conducts various meetings to develop social and religious culture. They provide their press club room for rent as a measure to help the needy and the people who wants to reach the media.

National Conference on Community Radio: Prospects and Challenges


National Conference on Community Radio: Prospects and Challenges
Department of Communication,
Manonmaniam Sundaranar University,
Tirunelveli – 12
Tamil Nadu
Development communication generally refers to the planned use of strategies and process of communications aimed at achieving development. Community media are media to which members of the community has access, for information, education and entertainment, when they need access. They are media in which the community participates, as planners, producers and performers. They are the means of expression of the community, rather than for the community.
Since the inception of the community radio, it has gained momentum in Indian scenario. The interventions of civil societies have invigorated the use of community media as an effective medium to foster the development progress. Community, alternative, citizens’ and civil society-based communication practices challenge one-way top-down communication models.
The success of any development initiative is assessed with participation of the community as its key factor. Community media initiatives are aimed at making the community people participate from the conception of the project. Hence these community media initiatives had carved a new space after the air waves was made free for the civil societies. Still the challenges of the community media lie in the participation of the community which has its own impact on the sustainability of the project.
At this juncture it would be meaningful to discuss about empowerment, participation, locality and development in community and alternative media, and how should such concepts be reviewed and re-thought. Papers should provide the best practices in community media across India and new concepts and approaches, offering innovative proposals on how to assess and evaluate these practices.
The conference will cover issues related to the theme. But papers can be on the following themes:
Community radio: Voice to the voiceless
Community video: Videos that empower
Community newspaper
Social media: a new horizon to unite the community
Participatory approaches in community media
Community networking
Important dates:

Submission of abstracts: on or before 24.02.2012

Notification of acceptance: 29. 02.2012

Final paper submission and registration of authors: 10.03.2012

Conference dates: 16 & 17 March, 2012

Abstract Submission:
An abstract of about 300 words together with an academic bio including the name of the institution, contact information (telephone/ e-mail) should be submitted on or before 24.02.2012 to reach:msu.communityradio2012@gmail.com
Full paper Submission:
Between 4000 - 5000 words to be submitted on or before 10.03.2012
The abstract and full paper should be sent in English only, but the presentation may be made in English or Tamil.

Registration Process
Rs.500/- for full-time research scholars and Rs. 750 for teachers and other participants, to be paid in DD drawn in favour of The Registrar, Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, Tirunelveli. This includes the cost of attending the conference, tea-breaks and working lunch during the conference. Arrangements for stay will be made on prior request before 12. 03. 2012 and payment. No TA/DA will be paid for the participants. A participation/ paper presentation certificate will be issued to those who register and attend the Conference personally.

The abstracts will be brought out in the form of peer reviewed conference proceedings and the contents will be uploaded in the department website.
Contact Information: 
Professor & Head
Department of Communication
Dean - Faculty of Arts
Manonmaniam Sundaranar University
Tirunelveli - 627 012 Tamil Nadu
Mobile: 9443126300, 9487999607     Phone : 9487999703
E-mail:  msu.communityradio2012@gmail.com

News Values

News Values

Owen Spencer-Thomas
What are news values?
News values are general guidelines or criteria that determine the worth of a news story and how much prominence it is given by newspapers or broadcast media.  They are fundamental to understanding news production and the choices that editors and other journalists face when deciding that one bit of information is news while another is not.
According to former Times and Sunday Times Editor, Harold Evans,
a news story…
… is about necessary information and unusual events
… should be based on observable facts
… should be an unbiased account
… should be free from the reporter’s opinion
However, the selection of news stories is subject to a wider range of influences than this simple basic definition.
The selection of news stories
•    What makes a story newsworthy
•    Galtung and Ruge’s list of news values
•    Do journalists prefer bad news stories?
•    News values as principles to be taught
•    Immediacy and technology
•    News values as ethical standards
What makes a story newsworthy ?
Information arrives in the newsroom from a wide range of sources minute by minute.  A news editor cannot report all this material, so he must be selective and filter out information that is not newsworthy.  Because he is in competition with other news outlets, he highlights only those stories he considers to be of greatest interest to his readers or audience.
Reports, which are interesting and newsworthy, are distinguished by a broadly agreed set of characteristics called ‘’news values’’.   These values provide journalists with a mechanism to sort through quickly, process and select the news from that vast amount of information made available to them.
In practice, when a journalist makes a judgment as to whether a story has the necessary ingredients to interest his readers, he will decide informally on the basis of his experience and intuition, rather than actually ticking off a checklist.  Even so, many studies of news production show that most of these factors are consistently applied across a range of print, broadcast, and online news organisations worldwide.
Galtung and Ruge’s list of news values
One of the best known lists of news values was drawn up by media researchers Johan Galtung and Marie Holmboe Ruge. They analysed international news stories to find out what factors they had in common, and what factors placed them at the top of the news agenda worldwide.
Although their research was conducted over three decades ago 1965, virtually any media analyst’s discussion of news values will refer to most of the characteristics they list. This list provides a kind of scoring system: a story which scores highly on each value is likely to come at the start of a television news bulletin, or make the front page of a newspaper.
The values they identified fall into three categories:
•    Impact
•    Audience identification
•    Pragmatics of media coverage
•    Threshold: The bigger impact the story has, the more people it affects, the more extreme the effect or the more money or resources it involves, the better its chances of hitting the news stands.
•    Frequency: Events, such as motorway pile-ups, murders and plane crashes, which occur suddenly and fit well with the newspaper or news broadcast’s schedule are more readily reported than those which occur gradually or at inconvenient times of day or night. Long-term trends are unlikely to receive much coverage.
•    Negativity: Bad news is more exciting than good news. Stories about death, tragedy, bankruptcy, violence, damage, natural disasters, political upheaval or simply extreme weather conditions are always rated above positive stories such as royal weddings or celebrations.  Bad news stories are more likely to be reported than good news because they are more likely to score high on other news values, such as threshold, unexpectedness, unambiguity and meaningfulness,
•    Unexpectedness: If an event is out of the ordinary it will be more likely to make it into the news than an everyday occurrence would. As Charles A. Dana famously put it: ””if a dog bites a man, that’s not news. But if a man bites a dog, that’s news!””
•    Unambiguity: Events which are easy to grasp make for better copy than those which are open to more than one interpretation, or where understanding of the implications depends on first understanding the complex background to the event.
Audience identification
•    Personalisation: People are interested in people. News stories that centre on a particular person, and are presented from a human interest angle, are likely to make the front page, particularly if they involve a well-known person. Some people claim this news value has become distorted, and that news editors over-rate personality stories, especially those involving celebrities.
•    Meaningfulness: This relates to cultural proximity and the extent to which the audience identifies with the topic. Stories about people who speak the same language, look the same, and share the same preoccupations as the audience receive more coverage than those involving people who do not.
•    Reference to elite nations: Stories concerned with global powers receive more attention than those dealing with less influential nations. This also relates to cultural proximity. Those nations which are culturally closest to our own will receive most of the coverage.
•    Reference to elite persons: The media pay attention to the rich, powerful, famous and infamous. Stories about important people get the most coverage. Hence, the American President gets more coverage than your local councillor.
Pragmatics of media coverage
•    Consonance: Stories which match the media’s expectations receive more coverage than those which contradict them.  At first sight, this appears to contradict the notion of unexpectedness. However, consonance refers to the media’s readiness to report an item, which they are more likely to do if they are prepared for it. Indeed, journalists often have a preconceived idea of the angle they want to report an event from, even before they get there.
•    Continuity: A story which is already in the news gathers a kind of momentum – the running story. This is partly because news teams are already in place to report the story, and partly because previous reportage may have made the story more accessible to the public.
•    Composition: Stories must compete with one another for space in the media. For instance, editors may seek to provide a balance of different types of coverage. If there is an excess of foreign news, for instance, the least important foreign story may have to make way for an inconsequential item of domestic news. In this way the prominence given to a story depends not only on its own news value but also on those of competing stories. This is a matter of the editors’ judgement, more than anything else.
Galtung and Ruge’s analysis cites pragmatic reasons why certain news stories are not reported.  For instance, the mass Burmese demonstration in 1988 failed to receive much media attention because the hostile regime of General Ne Win barred overseas journalists from the country.  By contrast, the mass demonstration in 2007 received far more attention because civilians themselves had the technology, with modern mobile phones and camcorders, to send instant messages and pictures out of the country to a waiting international media such as Reuters, BBC and CNN.
Galtung and Ruge argued that journalists tend to select stories with a high news value, that is, a high score on one or more of the news factors.   It is unlikely that a story will exhibit all of these.
Do journalists prefer bad news stories?
Galtung and Ruge’s list includes negativity as a news value.  However, journalists are at pains to point out that they select a story because of its interest value rather than simply because it is negative.  A bad news story is of interest if it is about events that make a big impact, are out of the ordinary, easy to grasp, or readily identified with.
News stories can be bad for some and good for others.  A defeat for the Republicans in the USA, or the Conservative Party in the UK, will be good news for Democrats, or the Labour Party.  Likewise a sports match result is both good and bad news.
News values as principles to be taught
The news values identified by Galtung and Ruge were an attempt to explain what actually happens in the selection of news stories. Many subsequent writers, particularly those concerned with the training of journalists, have taken this analysis as a starting point and developed from it a set of principles that journalists should use to identify newsworthy information.
So what do today’s teachers say makes a story interesting?
•    Impact or broad appeal: events that affect many people – the more it affects the better the story. A proposed income tax increase, for instance, has impact, because it will affect a lot of people.
•    Timeliness or immediacy: news gets out of date quickly; it’s timely if it happened recently. What is deemed “recent” is related to the publication cycle of the news medium in which the information will appear. On BBC News 24 events that happened during the past half hour are timely. In your monthly parish magazine events that took place over the past 30 days are timely.
•    Prominence: stories involving well-known places, companies, groups or people, especially celebs.  If you or I trip and fall in church, no one will take much interest, because we aren’t well known. But if the Archbishop of Canterbury trips and falls during a service, that’s a news story.
•    Proximity or closeness to home: events occurring in the newspaper circulation area or the broadcast area are likely to be of most interest. 2,000 job losses in Taiwan won’t get a mention. 20 redundancies in Cambridge may well make the front page of the local paper. The success of your summer fête will be an essential story for your parish magazine.
•    Conflict: stories about people or organisations at odds with each other. Information has conflict if it involves some kind of disagreement between two or more people. Conflict has drama.
•    Bizarre or out-of-the-ordinary: what deviates sharply from what you would expect and experience of everyday life, unusual, strange or wacky.
•    Currency or flavour of the month: events and situations that are currently in the news and being talked about.
•    Human interest: people are interested in people, so personalise your story.
•    About people’s everyday problems or interests: food, health, housing, schools, work, money problems.
An interesting news story will contain some of these elements, but it’s unlikely it will contain them all.   However, all stories should be accurate and truthful.
Immediacy and technology
Today’s media compete vigorously to be first with the news and immediacy is vital in the hard-nosed world of newsgathering.  The 21st century public pay scant attention to second-hand or stale stories and so editors will select only up-to-date information.  However, at the start of the 20th century when newspapers were the only source of news, competition was less fierce.
The effect of technology on news deadlines:
•    Film
•    Radio and Television
•    Information Technology (IT) and citizen journalism
The arrival of the cinema newsreels in 1910 brought moving pictures of important news events to the public, but did little to change the unhurried deadlines adopted by the national newspapers.  Cinemagazines, such as British Movietone News and Pathe Pictorial, shown in cinemas until 1970, were produced at a leisurely pace ensuring carefully written, accurate scripts.  Each newsreel contained about five top stories which could take up to about a week to prepare. Immediacy was not a priority.
Radio and Television
The arrival of, first radio, and then television, hastened the pace of newsgathering.  In the United Kingdom, the BBC, founded in 1922, began broadcasting sound, a new medium which had the potential for transmitting news quicker and more frequently than the daily newspaper.   By the outbreak of World War II, a growing number of people relied on their ‘’wireless’’, rather than their daily paper, for regular updates on the progress of the war.
Before long radio news bulletins began to include interviews and ‘’actuality’’ –  sound bites of speech and background noise recorded live and inserted into a report, adding life to the words of the reporter’s script.
The use of actuality in turn influences the news values in the selection of a radio news story.  Those stories which contain dramatic actuality are more likely to be selected than those that do not.   Thus a story which is considered  suitable for the written words on the front page of a newspaper may not necessarily be a suitable lead item for a radio news bulletin.
Following the post-war resumption of BBC Television broadcasts from Alexandra Palace in 1946, the new medium began to grow rapidly in popularity. Television offered viewers another kind of immediacy: moving pictures of news events were transmitted directly into viewers’ homes.
Television differs from both radio and the press and has  slightly different considerations when selecting news.  For instance, a story backed by dramatic or eye-catching pictures is more likely to be chosen than one without.
At first Television adopted the same format as the cinemas with the newsreel as a small part of the total programme output.  However, it was soon replaced by the news bulletin, which consisted of film and interviews, introduced by a newsreader.
The ‘’news flash’’, which  occasionally interrupted or replaced television programme schedules to provide news updates on events of great importance, was adopted later and reduced still more the time gap between the news broadcast and the event itself.
The arrival of BBC Radio 1 and Radio 2 in 1967, followed by an abundance of local radio stations, opened the way for news bulletins on the hour, every hour, providing regular updates on world, national, regional and local news events.
The next logical development came with rolling news – TV channels that broadcast news 24 hours a day, such as Cable News Network (CNN) in the United States, which introduced the idea in 1980.  Nine years later Sky News soon gained a reputation for immediacy and innovation when it started broadcasting a 24-hour news service by satellite in the UK, around Europe and now worldwide. BBC News 24 become the first competitor to Sky News when it was launched in 1997 as part of the BBC’s strategy to develop digital domestic television channels.
Breaking news is information about a current event that broadcasters feel warrants the interruption of scheduled programming in order to report its details. While, in the past, programming interruptions were restricted to extremely urgent news, such breaks are now common on 24-hour news channels. The term ‘’breaking news’’ has come to replace the older term ‘’news flash’’.
Information Technology (IT) and citizen journalism
Recent technological advances in newsgathering have made possible a level of immediacy unimagined a few decades ago.  IT has expanded to encompass many aspects of computing and technology which have revolutionised broadcasting.
In the UK, for instance, BBC News 24 (or the BBC News Channel as it is now called) has been able to diversify its content, with two minute looped bulletins available to view via BBCi (the BBC’s digital interactive television services), BBC News Online (the website of BBC News) and the BBC’s mobile website, alongside individual weather and sport bulletins. Since May 2007, the channel can also be viewed on the BBC News website through a live stream.
The new technology is used to encourage an interactive service with viewers emailing their opinions and, more importantly reporting news stories.  Viewers can also text information or send pictures and video clips of news events direct to the BBC Newsroom on their mobile phones.  Thus pictures and copy of breaking news can reach the newsroom long before professional journalists and camera operators reach the scene.  In the race for immediacy, the growing number of contributions from amateur journalists means that stories reaching the newsroom risk being less accurate and more biased.
New technological advances mean people can see news as it is happening.  Increasingly television and radio journalists are reporting what is taking place rather than what has just occurred.  So with less time and opportunity to explain the background to a news story, reporters tend to be describing unfolding events in much the same way as a sports commentator reports a live match.
The insatiable media appetite for immediacy means that many of today’s news stories tend to lack any detailed explanation of what lies behind the event and run the risk of bias.  At worst, in an attempt to get an exclusive story, journalists are under pressure to adopt the dodgy dictum:  “Don’t get it right; just write.”
Moreover technological developments mean media outlets are more open to audience input and feedback. Viewers and readers can text or email their opinions to newsrooms and indicate which news stories are of most interest to them. In an attempt to achieve relevance and maintain their share in a rapidly evolving market, news organisations may find themselves forced to adopt alternative news values that will attract and keep audiences. The growth of interactive media and citizen journalism is fast altering the traditional distinction between news producers and their hitherto passive audience.
News values as ethical standards
Some news organisations use the term ‘News Values’ to describe a different concept: the ethical standards expected of journalists in their work.
These ground rules spell out the good practice journalists should apply as they gather and process news stories. They are simply a code of ethics or canons of good and responsible journalism. These guidelines attempt to ensure the integrity of the journalist and guarantee the reliability of the news story. Both professional journalism associations and individual news organisations often make these rules freely available so that the public may know what to expect from their journalists.
The Associated Press state their commitment to so-called news values, such as not plagiarising, misidentifying nor misrepresenting themselves to get a story, nor paying newsmakers for interviews, avoiding conflicts of interest that may compromise accuracy, and maintaining their commitment to fairness.
The BBC lists the following values:
• Truth and accuracy
• Impartiality and diversity of opinion
• Editorial integrity and independence
• Serving the public interest
• Fairness
• Balancing the right to report with respect for privacy
• Balancing the right to report with protection of the vulnerable
• Safeguarding children
• Being accountable to the audience
Submitted by Naneetha R, II MA Communication, October, 2011.

Accountability of the Media

Mass media has to be accountable in the public’s interest that is, they are expected to behave in certain ways that contribute to the public good. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is reportedly under pressure from his colleagues to set up an official body to ensure the “accountability” of Indian media.
The move has reportedly been provoked by the way the mainstream media in the country covered the anti-corruption movement. It is true that much of media did give the Anna movement saturation coverage. But is also equally true that the side of the picture, showing those who were critical of Anna and his methods, was also presented, though not as extensively.
The single most important thing so far as the so-called common citizen was concerned was the anti-corruption movement. The media be made “accountable” to the government of the day is take away the voice of the people. The media is nothing more and nothing less than the amplified echo of the popular will.  Media must certainly remain accountable, but accountable to their own constituency, which are the people.  Media freedom is strong enough in India that even the idea has promptly evoked howls of outrage, with many stating that it’s not the government’s business to regulate media.
Developments in technology, deregulation and increased commercialization have combined to pose a threat to established ways of relating the activities and aspirations of mass media to the `needs of society’. At the core of the problem is the dilemma of reconciling media freedom with legitimate claims and expectations from private and public interests, under fundamentally changing conditions. All too often it seems media is expected to keep government “honest” yet there seldom seems any question over who keeps media honest?
When the news media became the supermarket tabloid, their credibility, became lost forever.  Our media-driven society needs to hold the producers and promoters of media accountable for the safety and security of the People.  Because media is consumer driven, it is the consumer’s responsibility to avoid, and therefore not reward, media product that is detrimental to the society. People have blind faith in the media and they are convinced that what they hear or what the media has declared is correct.
So media definitely has a responsibility on its shoulders, which is to guide the people. Media has a significant and indispensable place in our lives. It brings to us the true face of today’s world – a face which is usually hidden from the common man. It makes us realize that we are being ruled by the wrong people – politicians who are only interested in their personal gains and not the welfare of their people.
Chinjulal, I MA Communication, September, 2011.

Experience Climate Change

Eight districts in Tamil Nadu have seen temperatures soaring above 100*F.  But here in Coimbatore, it is just a bit above 90*F. Nature is offering you a really cool welcome to its biological hot spot, the Western Ghats.
We at Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) - India, Eco Club, PSG College of Arts and Science and Arulagam are previleged to host you at South India’s Best Managed Tiger Reserve, Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, near Coimbatore.
We the humans have divided the lands into Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and so on. But nature and wildlife have no boundaries. The contiguous western ghats offers shelter for all. Let us have a happy outing in the Nature’s Abode, Parambikulam Tiger Reserve.
Coimbatore and this portion of Western Ghats have received over 35o mm rainfall even in this summer, which is 110 % above normal. This has helped our forests to remain open for visitors than to get cocooned for the fear of forest fire.  We are likely to meet Nilgiri Langurs, Gaurs, Cheetals, Wild boars and Racket tailed Drongos amidst lush green trees while we proceed from Sethumadai (Pollachi) to Parambikulam via Anamalai Tiger Reserve.
Depending on our luck, we may even sight Hornbills, Srilankan frog mouths, Crested Serpent Eagles, Wild dogs, the elegant Sambar deers and the majestic Elephants.
You might ask about the big cats - Leopards and Tigers. Yes there are here and they are definitely going to have a look at us, but I cannot assure you that we can see them.
Let us all hope the phrase It’s raining cats and dogs“,  also shower us with sighting of Tigers and Wild dogs.
Another good news - The biggest trouble for trekkers in a deciduous forest - Ticks. Continuous rains would have deactivated them. But this triggers another issue. Leeches are active now. Hence those who have dreamed of treks should get ready to donate some blood to leaches.
Now coming back to our 3 day residential workshop, I wish to remind you about the instructions I have sent to you a week back. It is in the following link.
The final list of participants
The Schedule
Initial announcement about the event
Please send me your views regarding these arrangements so that some improvement can be made.

WCS -India workshop for Media professionals/List of Participants

Selected persons based on their submission:
1 .The New Indian Express - Senthil Kumar.S - Reporter - Pollachi.
2. The New Indian Express - Rajeswari.G - S.Reporter/Sub Editor - Coimbatore.
3. The New Indian Express - Gokul Chandrasekar - Reporter - Chennai.
4. Dinakaran - Venkatesh, Chief Reporter - Coimbatore.
5. Dinakaran - Sujay Anand, Photographer - Coimbatore.
6. The Hindu - Akila.K - Coimbatore.
7. The Hindu - Anandan.K, Special News Photographer - Coimbatore.
7. The Times of India -  Nandhu Sundaram - Coimbatore.
8. The Times of India - Jackson - Photographer - Coimbatore.
9. Vikatan - Vijay.T - Photographer - Coimbatore.
10. Hello FM - Deepan - Production Executive - Coimbatore.
11. Coimbatorecity.com - Radhakrishnan - Web Developer - Coimbatore.
12. Spl invitee from previous camp - George Joseph ( www.peermade.info) Coimbatore.
13. Jaya TV - Sudevan.P - Chief Reporter - Coimbatore.
14. Down to Earth - Sumana Narayanan - Senior Reporter - Chennai.
15. University of Tasmania -  Vishnu Prahalad.N, Research Associate - Australia.
16. Poovulagu - Srinivasan.R.R. - Editor - Chennai.
17. Daily News and Analysis - Elizabeth Soumya - Principle Correspondent - Bangalore.
18.Dinamalar - Sivaprasad.R - Photographer - Dinamalar - Pollachi.
19. Dinamalar Mahesh Kumar.N - Reporter - Dinamalar - Anamalai.
20.The Indian Express - Hitarth Pandiya - Bureau Chief and Special Correspondent - Vadodara, Gujarat.
21.Sun Network - Jebaraj Joshua - Correspondent - Valparai.
22. Sun TV - Akbar. A - Correspondent - Pollachi.
23.Daily Thanthi -Saba.S - Reporter - Coimbatore.
24.Daily Thanthi -Vivek.S - Photographer - Coimbatore.
25.Theekadhir - Senthil Kumar - Reporter - Coimbatore.
26.Theekadhir - Jeyakumar.K -Reporter - Virudhunagar.
27.The Deccan Chronicle - Kotteswaran.C - Principal Correspondent - Chennai.

WCS -India workshop for Media professionals/Schedule

Sensitising the Media on conserving Tigers and its habitat in Tamil Nadu
Three day residential workshop for Working Journalists
Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, May 6 - 8, 2011

Day 1 ( Friday, May 6)
8.00 hrs: Starting to Parambikulam Tiger Reserve from Coimbatore Collector Office Premises (adjacent to Coimbatore Railway Station main entrance).
11.00 hrs: Reaching Parambikulam Tiger Reserve
11.00 - 11.30 hrs: Tea and Snacks
11.30 - 12.15 hrs: Settling down in the Dormitories/Rooms.
12.15 - 13.15 hrs:  Community Hall - Mr.Vijayananthan.K, IFS., Wildlife Warden, Parambikulam Tiger Reserve presents an overview of Parambikulam and Anamalais Landscape: History, Flora and Fauna - Managing a Tiger Reserve - Conservation challenges - Rehabilitation for Tribals - Sustainable Eco tourism.
13.45 - 14.45 hrs:  Lunch
15.00 - 15.15 hrs: Prof. C.R.Jayaprakash, Project Coordinator:
Objective of the workshop - Topics to be covered - Tiger Estimates - Role of Media in Conservation.
15.15 - 16.00 hrs: Dr.Ravi Chellam, Director, Wildlife Conservation Society- India:Overview of the workshop - Introduction to ecology and behaviour of large cats with a focus on tigers.
16.00 - 16.30 hrs: Tea and Discussion.
16.30 - 18.30 hrs: Field trip - vehicle safari upto Parambikulam reservoir.
18 .30 - 19.15 hrs: Shower/Fresh’n up.
19.15 - 20.15 hrs: The Truth About the Tigers - Documentary on Tigers in India - Discussion.
20.30: Dinner.
Day 2
6.30 - 8.30 hrs: Trek in the decidious and shola forest.
8.30 - 9.15 hrs: Shower/Fresh’n up.
9.15 - 10.00 hrs: Break fast.
10.00 - 11.15 hrs: Dr.Ravi Chellam & Dr.Rajah Jayapal - Wildlife conservation in India, with special emphasis on tigers - A brief history and analysis - Interaction.
11.15 - 11.45 hrs: Tea & Snacks
11.45 - 12.30 hrs: Mr. Mohanraj.K, Founder - Save Coimbatore Wetlands - Common threats to Wildlife in Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve - Managing Pilgrimage Tourism.
12.30 - 13.15 hrs: Mr.Bharathidasan.S, Secretary, Arulagam, Coimbatore  Conserving the Critically Endangered White backed Vultures in Moyar Valley.
13.15 - 14.30 hrs: Lunch break

14.30 - 15.30 hrs: Mr.Arumugam.A, Wildlife biologist, Anamalai, Destructive DevelopmentsRoad kills  in the forest - Hyena’s in Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve Landscape. -
15.30 - 15.45 hrs: Tea & Snacks
15.45 - 16.45 hrs: Dr.Rajah Jayapal - Wildlife crime - Tiger trade - Enforcement of Law - Role of Civil Society.
16.45 - 18.45 hrs: Vehicle Safari in the Decidious forests.
18.45 - 19.30 hrs: Fresh’n up.
19.45 - 20.45 hrs: Dinner.
21 hrs - 21.30 hrs: Discussion/Evaluation on the proceedings.
Day 3
6.30 - 8.30 hrs: Vehicle Safari in Parambikulam Tiger Reserve.
8.30 - 9.15 hrs: Shower / Fresh’n up
9.15 - 10.00 hrs: Break fast
10.00 - 10.30 hrs: Mr.Vishnu Prahalad.N, Honorary Research Associate, Centre for coastal wetland conservation, University of Tasmania - Tigers, sustainable development and the media - UN model 
1030 - 11.15 hrs: Prof. C.R. Jayaprakash -Eco  Tourism on the cross roads - Managing the conflicts. 
11.15 - 11.30 hrs - Tea & Snacks.
11.30 - 12.30 hrs: Dr. Ananda Kumar, NCF, Valparai - Man Animal conflict in ValparaiMitigation measures to reduce Elephant conflict in Valparai. Success story - Leopard conflict reduction in Maharastra. -
 12.30 -13.30 hrs: Lunch.
13.30 - 14.30 hrs: Mr.Mohanraj.N, WWF, Tamil Nadu, Tiger Estimation through Camera traps - Case study: Sathyamangalam - Nilgiris Elephant corridor issue.
14.30 - 15.30: Round table - Discussion on the proceedings - feedback session chaired by Dr.Ravi Chellam.
15.30 - 16.00: Tea & Snacks.
16.15 hrs - Leaving to Coimbatore.
18.30 hrs: Drop at Coimbatore  Collector office premises.

WCS -India workshop for Media professionals/Instructions

Instructions to the selected participants of Wildlife Conservation Society – India sponsored three day residential workshop for Media persons
Conservation often requires that its purpose be translated or communicated to non biologists/lay men. Media could serve as the communication medium through which conservation, and in the bigger picture, the whole world could be benefited.
The workshop aims to achieve afore mentioned goal by adopting various strategies to sensitize the practising professionals. Apart from sensitisation, local issues on Forests and Wildlife Conservation   would also be dealt with so that Media can have clear understanding of the ground truth.
This three day residential workshop is conducted at Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, adjacent to Anamalai Tiger Reserve. The place is 100 kms south of Coimbatore ( via Pollachi). Dates: May 6 – 8, 2011.
Travel to  Parambikulam Tiger Reserve:
Participants will be taken to Parambikulam Tiger Reserve  (PTR), by road ( 2.5 hours travel time from Coimbatore).
Travel, stay, food and workshop expenses from Coimbatore – Parambikulam and back to Coimbatore only will be borne by WCS – India. Outstation participants have to arrange their own travel plans to reach and get back from Coimbatore.
WCS -India vehicle will leave from Coimbatore Collector office premises, nearer to Coimbatore Railway station at 8 AM on Friday, May 6. Participants will be dropped back at the same place on Sunday, May 8, 2011. No other vehicle will be arranged for late comers and entering Parambikulam Tiger Reserve without prior information is also difficult.
Participants will be accommodated in two dormitories at Parambikulam Tiger Reserve (separate for Men & Women). Since there aren’t enough rooms for all and dormitories are well equipped, this arrangement has been made.
If the number of women participants go below 4, a separate room for them will be arranged.
Participants will be taken for couple of short treks/vehicle safaris inside PTR in the mornings and evenings. Day time will be shared with experts on all three days with presentation – discussion and short film/documentary screenings.
Outstation participants who come early to Coimbatore can have an overnight stay/wash  in Annamalai Hotel nearer to railway station arranged by WCS. Local participants will join them at 8 AM to travel in two vans towards PTR.
Participation in this workshop gives:
Inputs on Media Coverage of Wildlife - responsible and unbiased reporting,
Success stories on environment,
Analysing Non Governmental Organisation’s (NGO) agenda,
Sociological impact of conservation related activities,
Maintaining an efficient relationship with forest officials and conservation related stories in Media.
Status of three Tiger reserves in Tamil Nadu and the newly proposed Sathy Tiger Reserve
Positioning of Tiger at the top of the value chain,
Man – animal conflict, sustainable development,
Ill effects of pilgrimage tourism, forests as climatic and resource guardians,
Threat from poachers, importance of endemic species
Threat from exotic species, conserving the corridors of migratory animals
Healthy forest management, reintroduction of extinct species
Improving the prey base, scientific methods in documenting the presence of tigers
Wildlife research documentation,
Organising wildlife campaigns,
Snowballing media coverage,
Conservation photography.
1.    A certificate signed by WCS authorities.
2. Research reports and books on wildlife.
3. DVD’s on Wildlife.
This workshop is sponsored by WCS – India  and organised by Eco Club of PSG College of Arts and Science  and Arulagam, an eNGO in Coimbatore. Hence the food, stay and travel expenses at Coimbatore and PTR will be taken care of by the organisers.
However, the sponsor does not cover your travel expense from your home town to Coimbatore and vice versa and other unexpected expenditures.
1. Do not bring plastic bags.
2. No perfumes/body sprays.
4. The food and stay is in the forest. Hence a premium service cannot be expected. Still, Parambikulam is known for its good service.  No junk foods allowed. South Indian, Vegetarian and Non Vegetarian food will be served.
5. Smoking and alcohol consumption is strictly banned. Even the baggages are checked at the entry point. Anyone found using them is likely to be penalised by PTR authorities. Organisers do not have any say regarding this rule.
6. Sighting of Wildlife during short treks/Safari is just a matter of luck. Hence don’t expect Tigers and Elephants to come roaming.
9.    Photography should not be a disturbance to Wildlife and the participants have to adhere to the rules of PTR and Kerala Forest Department.
10.    Only BSNL mobile works in this forest. Hence bring BSNL sim cards. Broad band doesn’t exist. Hence day to day reporting from PTR is really difficult.
1.Formals and Semi formals. Forest colour (brown, green, grey colour) dress code is better for  outings.
2.Sneaker shoes are highly recommended. Two pairs of extra socks are essential so that dormitories do not get soaked with the sweat smell.
3.Hats (again dull coloured) advised.
4. One bed spread shall be brought by the participant so that they do not feel uncomfortable with the common use blankets given in the dormitory.
5.A thin winter wear, preferably a thermal wear to keep you warm in the night. But day time will be definitely warmer. Luckily PTR received good rains this week.
6.Tick bites will be highly irritating in summer. Hence avoid half pants and three fourths. Since it is raining now ( rare occurrence), tick bites will be less, but Leach bites will become common if you opt for trekking.
7.A handy torch light will be of much use.
8.Bring your own Medical kit if you have a health issue for Hospitals and Medical shops are at least 25 kms away. However an emergency Medical kit with basic medicines will be available with the organisers.
Around 25 journalists are expected to participate in this three day residential workshop. Over 70 % of them are selected from the important forest and wildlife vicinity areas like Nilgiris, Coimbatore, Pollachi, Valparai, Madurai etc.
To cater to the needs/usage of these local correspondents, the course design is oriented much towards local issues than on national policies. Hence Senior Journalists from Metropolitan cities should not expect high level discussions on policy matters in forest management.
But the issues we see in Sathy, Nilgiris, Valparai are of great relevance even at an international level. Presence of Tigers and Elephants in large numbers in these areas and the increasing human - animal conflict  is of great concern to every nature enthusiast or an environmentalist.
Language barrier: At least 50 % of the presentations will be in Tamil. Journalists who have problem in understanding Tamil can have one to one discussions with field experts since most of them will be staying there.
For further details and clarifications
Call or mail:
1.Project Coordinator : C.R.Jayaprakash. 98942 59100
Additional coordinators
Bharathidasan (Arulagam)  +91 98432 11772.
Lakshminarayanan.N (WCS- India) + 91 9445779052.
Mohanraj.K (Save Coimbatore Wetlands) + 9363147760.
Email enquiries: crjayaprakash@gmail.com
Blog updates in www. blog.crjayaprakash.com

Media and Tiger Conservation

Dear Media Professional,
Here is an invitation for you to participate in a three day residential workshop at Parambikulam Tiger Reserve from May 6 -8, 2011.
I wish to register my heartfelt thanks for patiently reading my mails and sometimes replying me too.
Now I wish to offer something which will be of great interest to you.
With full support from Wildlife Conservation Society – India Program, I am organising a 3 day residential workshop for Working Journalists. The theme is Sensitising the Media on Conserving Tigers and their Habitat.
Eminent scientists and conservationists like Shekar Dattatri (Wildlife & Conservation Film maker from Chennai) and Dr.Ravi Chellam ( Country Director – WCS India Program) are to address you for three days in the core jungles of Parambikulam Tiger Reserve which lies adjacent to Anamalai Tiger Reserve, 100 kms to the south of Coimbatore. The dates are from May 6 – 8, 2011.
The idea of the workshop is to highlight the importance of Tigers and its habitat and stress the need for conserving them for a better future. Since the Media ( Press, Television, Radio & New Media) is now playing a vital role in creating awareness, we are happy to invite you.
25  Media persons will be selected for this for WCS – India Program sponsored workshop. Three days’ stay, food and travel/trek inside the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve will be taken care of by the organisers.
You just need to come to Coimbatore by 8 AM on May 6. We will take care of you the next three days and drop you back by 6 PM at Coimbatore on May 8..
Detailed information and discussions will be shared with you on Tiger and Wildlife Conservation by the experts who work in the field. Your participation is likely to enrich you with a detailed information on the status and future of the big cats, Tigers in India.
Curtain raiser in The New Indian Express, Coimbatore

How to join this camp?
If interested, please write back to me in the Comments box below. 25 working journalists will be selected from Tamil Nadu. Preference will be given to Journalists who have interest in Wildlife, Nature and Conservation.
If needed, I can send an email to your Editor/Publisher requesting him to permit you to attend this event on On Duty Leave. You can also participate in this workshop just on your willingness. We are not insisting any permission letter from your senior colleagues.
Though we are open to all Journalists, we would like this workshop to be utilised by Journalists who work in and around the core forest areas of Tamil Nadu like Nilgiris, Pollachi, Coimbatore, Erode, Sathy, Salem, Krishnagiri, Tirunelveli, Theni, Rajapalayam, Point Calimere etc. Even Journalists from Chennai are also welcome since their ideas and works can reach a wider audience.
If you are not in a position to attend the workshop, you can also pass this message to your colleagues/friends in the Media. Reporters, Sub editors, District Correspondents, Photographers/Videographers working in the main stream media can attend this workshop which is to be held amidst the roar of Tigers and Elephants.
We assure you to serve with a moderate to comfortable stay with hygienic food and healthy thoughts on Conservation despite the fact that event is organised inside a deep jungle. We selected Parambikulam Tiger Reserve to host you because of the healthy practices maintained there in the past 4 years and I personally would rate as the Best managed Tiger Reserve in South India.
We request you to come and relish at a cool place amidst abundant greenery and wildlife, for you had enough of hot trails during the Legislative Election Campaign in Tamil Nadu.
We sincerely believe that our interactive sessions with you on Tiger Conservation will lead to a better future for the national animal through your thoughts and publications.
How to register for this workshop?
You just need to reply for this message by sending your consent in the comments box below with your designation and mobile number. I can send you further information/clarifications in a day.
 Preference will be given for those who register by 25, April, 2011.
For further enquiries, feel free to call
Prof. C.R.Jayaprakash,
Coordinator – Workshop on Media and Tiger Conservation,

Mobile: 98942 59100.
email: crjayaprakash @ gmail.com
web: www.crjayaprakash.com

Note : To know more about this workshop, you also can follow the link below, which has details about the  similar camp conducted by our team in the month of Febraury.
Media support for the previous workshop

 Some images from the workshop

Edutainment for i volved screenagers

‘Edutainment’ for today’s ‘i-volved Screen-agers’
Source:  Ashwini Gangal, afaqs!, Mumbai, March 25, 2011
The FICCI 2011 session began with some hardcore facts and figures, courtesy Cartoon Network’s ‘New Generations 2011′– a research study on Indian kids’ lifestyle and the evolution (over the last 10 years) in terms of their attitudes, behaviours and preferences. The focus of the study was kids in the age group of 7-14 years, belonging to SEC ABC, based in 19 cities, across four states (Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra). The study also included face-to-face interviews with the parents of kids in the 4-6 years age band.
Duncan Morris, vice-president, research and market development, Turner International Asia-Pacific shared some eye-opening statistics. It was found that 79 per cent of the respondents are mobile phone users, and 92 per cent of kids have mobile phones in their homes, compared to a mere 17 per cent a decade ago. Also, the research revealed that the number of kids with computers at home has increased from 6 per cent in 2001, to 22 per cent in 2011. Moreover, while a meagre 2 per cent of the homes surveyed had DVD players in 2001, today, the same figure is a whopping 61 per cent.
Additional findings showed that kids in India are more likely to interact with computers and online content than their parents. Specifically, the data revealed the following: amongst internet users, 22 per cent of kids access the internet daily and 67 per cent of kids play online games, followed by 51 per cent of kids listening to or downloading music. While 45 per cent of kids go online to search for information, 26 per cent do so for emailing purposes, 23 per cent for homework and 19 per cent for social networking.
Jargon of the session being ‘i-volution’, the study shed light on how kids today are a highly ‘i-volved’ breed, thanks to all the internet exposure amidst other technology. Duncan shared, “The study showed that today kids are more influential, intelligent and informed than they were a decade back.” He added that TAM data showed that Indian kids’ love for the television has remained stable over the years; in fact, a slight increase over the years was noted.
The average amount of time an Indian kid spends watching television is around two hours and 18 minutes a day, said the data. “Internet usage,” Duncan continued, “has grown, but still has a long way to go in terms of growth.” Further, it was found that beyond television, the usage of second and third screens in homes (internet, mobile) is additive - that is, it does not serve to replace television usage in any way.
Era of Online Gaming
Sharma then began the discussion with, “As the digital space proliferates in the country, it poses both a challenge as well as an opportunity for traditional media.” Regarding online gaming, he added, “It’s a stress buster for kids, especially those without siblings and with limited outdoor place to play. Mumbai is an apt example.”
Parents, he informed, didn’t regard online gaming as taboo any longer as, in their opinion, it instils in their kids a healthy spirit of competitiveness. In fact, even marketers and brand consultants are using this medium to address/target kids. Thus, the medium needs to be appropriately customised by content owners.
Nazara’s Mittersain shared some facts found by his team. “Today, we get around 150-200 game downloads per day; of these, 25 per cent are downloaded by kids aged 7-14 years, or by their parents (for the kids).” Thus began the discussion on ‘edutainment’ in the online space. Much to the delight of those present, Simon said that the multiple screens that are a part of kids’ reality today, give them ‘i-gasm’ and ‘ear-gasms’ (maximum exposure to various kinds of content).
This content, pitched Sharma, though available in abundance, needs to be localised. Suneja said, “Kids’ ability to gravitate towards good content is far better than that of adults. However, the content needs to be marketed properly and a lot of education on the matter is required for the marketing fraternity in India.”
Psychological Hazards Facing ‘Screen-agers’
Psychiatrist Dr Chavda amazed the audience by sharing the possible adverse effects of the media. Overuse and over-exposure is linked to attention deficit disorders, a condition called ’slow media rage’ (akin to road rage, it comprises undue aggression triggered by malfunctioning machines/gadgets), overly aggressive behaviour (as a function of violent video games), and pervasive developmental disorders (for instance, autism).
“The next Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) - a compilation of diagnostic criteria for mental illnesses - will include a disorder called ‘Media Addiction’!” he shared, asserting, “Marketers must exercise responsibility and regulation. It is a must.”

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