Mr. Lalit K. Jha, Chief US Correspondent of Press Trust of India from Washington DC delivered Subject Expert Engagement (SEE) Talk on “Future Possibilities in Online Journalism” at KIIT School of Mass Communication (KSMC).
Providing an in-depth analysis of the current media industry scenario, he told journalism students to gear up for the fast-changing media industry. Journalists and the media industry are struggling with increasing competition, drop in revenue and are facing job cuts, he said. “In the last year, nearly 5000 journalists in the US have lost their jobs. The situation is worse in India. Many of them are experienced and good journalists. The remuneration a journalist gets is sometimes lower than the minimum wage,” he stated.
The media market is changing and so should the journalists, he stressed. The solution is to prepare a model where the journalists can directly sell his or her work to the highest bidding media house, he suggested. Mr Jha talked about launching project 5WH, which is a multilingual e-commerce platform for professional journalists to sell their ready-to-use products, services, and creativity to news media outlets. “The journalists need to be empowered to write their stories and increase their visibility across the world in the language they want to write in, the medium they want to write in. The remuneration depends on the journalist, and not the media outlets”, he added.
Mr. Jha has been based out of Washington DC since January 2009. He has been reporting about the India-US relationship, American politics, and Indian Diaspora. He has previously worked with various media outlets including IANS, The Hindu, The Hindustan Times, The Indian Express and NDTV. He has also reported for The Irrawaddy in Myanmar and Pajhwok Afghan News.
Earlier, Prof. Himansu Sekhar Khatua, CEO, KSMC and CMD of Kalinga TV welcomed the guest speaker and spoke briefly about founding principles of Kalinga TV and regional media industry. Senior Indian journalist Mr. Shyamhari Chakra was also present at the event and spoke a few words of encouragement to the students. He praised Dr. Achyuta Samanta, Founder, KIIT & KISS for a world-class educational institution like KIIT. He inspired students to join the platform and volunteered to collaborate with the school and guide the students.
Dr. Bidu Bhusan Dash, Course Coordinator, KSMC and Ms. Ruby Nanda, Assistant Professor, KSMC & SEE Coordinator also spoke on the occasion. The session was moderated by Aprajita Singhal and the creative designing was done by Sujana Tamang, both 3rd year students of KSMC. Faculty members and students from the School as well as from other institutes were present.