Straight Talk by Roy Moraleta
Straight Talk

Media: A Contradiction

Jun 10, 2021, 12:05 AM
Roy Moraleta

Roy Moraleta

Columnist

"Give me a Media that is totally independent from the government and I will give you a Media that is truthful, mighty and fearless."

Media is a big contradiction. To think that media is and should always be unbiased is a mistake. The idea that Media is supposed not to take sides is a myth. And while it is their responsibility to tell the truth as they find it, that is, in reporting a fact, an event or a particular incident, but Media does take sides, (ie: editorial, opinion columns, block time and even regular commentary programs) and whether we like it or not it does, and it must!

Be alarmed instead when Media would not anymore takes sides, when they are silenced and shut up.

First of all, networks and media outlets (mainstream) are not subsidized by peoples money. They do not live by the support of the government. They are not beholden to the people and government anyway. Their existence solely depend upon varied sources and benefactors.

Not the lot of any of those who are quick to spite and smite Media of their shortfalls are supporting and sustaining the industry. Just like all normal people, Media people and journalists are working and working real hard to earn a living.

And often than not, sadly, not even the lot from the business sector are quick to invest in the industry. And this is very true particularly in the localities like in Tacloban and in region 8.

Media is a business enterprise. It must engage in business for it to survive. Hence, it need not be unreasonable if it must protect its sponsors, and at times are and must be inclined and bias toward their interests.

How I wish the people and the private sector are the dominant stakeholders of the media industry. Such would make the media more independent from agencies and personalities of the government whose vested interest often ran against the interest of the greater welfare of the public. But that is not the case in the local media.

I am not privy of the national Media and I dare not speak for them. And while that is true that the Media in Leyte strives under such circumstances, I should admit that it struggles to live up to its call - stay truthful, fearless and fair.

If only media industry is strongly backed up by patriotic business sector, if only media is strongly backed up by patriotic individuals... then we have a media that is totally independent from the government. But again, that is not what democracy is.

The Media can engage and transact business to any entities, be it government or private. And often than what critics would want rather to see, whoever gets the bigger stake gets the greater hold and say. After all, that is the essence of democracy. Majority rules. The strong prevails.

Therefore, if we one want to exert greater influence in the media industry, they better pay the cost.

People must get to be thoroughly involve. Let the business sector and the private philanthropists and patriots be among the major stakeholders in the industry. But until they rise up and help the media, the gods and the mighty from among the political families will continue to exploit it. But again, even so, democracy allows it.

Give me a Media that is totally independent from the government and I will give you a Media that is truthful, mighty and fearless.


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