To Be On The List As Part Of The Workforce

Nune Hakhverdyan

Art critic, journalist

As we head towards the parliamentary elections, which have already become public after the Velvet Revolution, those who have expressed their desire to become MPs in Armenia and their supportive political forces, we are given a chance to talk about their personalities.

Or more accurately, about the migration of people.

Many of the 183 MPs nominees who have appeared after Nikol Pashinyan, who have gained great public support and who are in the list of the My Step alliance are not known to the public. Some became known because they became a part of the government body.

And it turned out that among the most familiar ones, there were many journalists.

It may seem natural to consider that over the years, a process of opposite selection has taken place in different areas (adaptive associates would move forward rather than good professionals), resulting in the fact that new and promising idea generators would be left out of the list of political, educational, economic and cultural decision makers.

And in this situation, the meda worked more or less efficiently, as the profession itself meant discernment and awareness. And also hope, that the journalistic work can affect decision makers.

Sometimes it really did affect it, but in a, so to speak, parallel reality, because the media field, which is less controllable, existed simultaneously with the viciously forward moving pyramid.

The purpose of the pyramid was to control the content of journalists as a cheap and dependant workforce, and now when the media field is somewhat confused, but still liberalized, journalists want to be useful.

And also be stable in this unstable post-revolutionary situation, when their profession is still financially compensated for very poorly.

After all, journalism is the most expensive profession, that sells and is bought in Armenia at the heaviest price.

Over the years, an irreversible thing has taken place, journalism has become diminished in every sense of the word.

The journalist has become unimportant. One can easily be replaced with another, with almost a machine-tool approach, they demanded daily releases and paid less. Everything was done so that journalists do not have independant scores, in order to become a cheap workforce.

Naturally, parties and alliances are delighted to use that workforce by including recognized journalists in their list. The elections are extraordinary, the situation is non-standard, everything is developing fast and the journalists are remembered first.

First of all, it’s convenient, useful and also… has no prospect.

The revolution was largely due to journalists, during an almost live broadcast mode. Which required a journalist’s commitment to both their profession and the revolution.

These two motives surprisingly and unnaturally coincided with April-May 2018.

They coincided, with the hopes of re-dividing again, the journalist who is part of the revolution is not a journalist, if they continued to remain a part of it.

For example, in the same way that Nikol Pashinyan is no longer a journalist.

Of course, professions have fine borders. But the journalist who continues to be a journalist, editor-in-chief, or head of the news service and simultaneously appears in different important lists (City Council, then MPs), while not violating any legal points, blurs the fine border, which, after all, was the meaning of this revolution.

Their trustworthiness becomes shaky.

If the new authorities aim to make the formation of free media a pivotal step (like a free judicial system or business), then journalist-MPs are not a prospective labor force. Now they need to work very fast. To destroy, not to build.

Nune Hakhverdyan

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

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