The News Field Before The Storm

Nune Hakhverdyan

Art critic, journalist

One of the most discussed and actual topics in recent days is the media field, where anything can happen, and you can find right and wrong, opinion and ambition, gossip and fact, sensations and illusory sources, links to individuals and anonymous alarms, and all  right next to each other.

Most importantly, different small and big interests (and often shady).

Everyone, even journalists themselves, is dissatisfied with the work of mass media, and expressing about the work of the media is an even more relevant than exposing corruption, which is the basis of the post-revolutionary news pipeline.

It is about media responsibility, internal regulation, ethical commissions and various control mechanisms.

A group of media outlets decided, that in a chaotic situation it is necessary to reach out to the government and call upon them to oversee the media-social media bridges and go back to that working model, which allowed to more or less maintain the status quo.  

The revolution was a serious shock for many media outlets which had been able to find their place an space, who knew what, why and when to publish.

Almost like  the judges who aside from having formed professional demands, always had internal and unwritten rules (the court cases were opened, dropped, or resolved by the admonations or direct orders of those outside the profession).  

Nikol Pashinyan addressed the judges in one of  his first message as a Prime Minister, saying there would no longer be instructions, simply work, remember the professional side and forget about different shadow connections and gangs.

Nikol Pashinyan is a serious moderator in public relations and understands very well, that emotional texts are not necessary rather, the opposite, to remind about something important in a careful, almost guiding language.

That from now on, the professional community is the judge, the guide, and responsible.

This message was also well suited to the media and many media outlets tried (also genuinely) to adapt to the new reality, where it is more important to remember about the profession, separately from political opportunism and the interests of its owners.

Journalism as a public profession and a public tool has been forced to be open and massive.

And when there are shady connections and commitments, personal arrangements and confidential financial flows, the media starts to maneuver between freedom and the shadow. The media doesn’t feel comfortable and free.

Maybe it was predictable, new members of the government prefer to have a direct connection with the audience, bypassing the media.

And the worst step that the media could do is to get upset and compain. For quite a long time, journalism has been an adjunct to political forces, the daily news and agenda dictated not by the public, but by the parties.

The media did not oppose and did not encourage the burst of opposition from their employees, moreover, in many cases they did the opposite selection, when the media outlet never needed competent, knowledgeable and well-informed journalists, they prefer to work with easy to manage beginners, whose competence did not allow them to resist the editorial strategy.

Now, the public opposes the media, and in some cases already demanding receipts for publishing unchecked, fake, fraudulent, pseudo-breaking and unobtrusive manipulative information.

It’s as though there is a calm before the storm, and the anticipation for that storm will either overcome it or weaken it, or become an opportunity for corrupt media scandals. Especially, that in the future there are different important elections.

Perhaps this is the situation, when it’s not worth waiting for fast changes and even more so wait for changes from others.

Of course, it would be nice if the storm subsides, and the tormented are helped to be freed. Ultimately, freedom is a substance that should be remembered every day, going to work, talking with the editor in chief and writing any news social media status or open letter.  

The emotions and accusations can be easily resisted, if the media field and it’s majority is competent. If a separate  journalist is competent and acts as an independent player in the media field.

Nune Hakhverdyan

The views expressed in the column are those of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the views of Media.am.

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