‘Nerkaanal,’ a unique quarterly magazine , the first of its kind in Tamil

Boutha Ayyanar says that it is his duty to bring to public knowledge these real heroes, who have not done what they had achieved for the love of money or fame.

‘Nerkaanal,’  a unique quarterly magazine , the first of its kind in Tamil, takes as its subject people who have excelled in their chosen field but stay away from limelight. Subjects who have had a significant role to play in the development of Tamil art and literature but stayed away from the attention of mass media. The magazine is into the fifth issue now and the sixth one is getting ready. Boutha Ayyanar, a native of Vinayakapuram near Melur in Madurai district, now settled in Chennai, a writer and critic is the Editor/Publisher of this magazine.

So far, Nerkaanal has featured N. Muthusamy (playwright); V. Sriram (translator); Vannanilavan (writer); Nazzer (film personality) and P. Krishnamurthy (painter and art director). The future list includes V. Vasanth Devi (educationist), Poet.Abi, V.Geetha, S. V. Rajadurai, Anita Ratnam, Sanjay Subramaniam, Gnakkoththan, Nuhumam and Deepaselvan, a Sri Lankan student studying in Madras University, who has been recording the sufferings of Sri Lankan Tamils through his ‘lived experience.”

Bringing out a magazine like ‘Nerkaanal’ is an arduous task. More than the financial implications of publishing a special magazine, the time and toil involved are more. The success of the magazine goes to Tamil lovers, philanthropists and anonymous contributors. For lack of financial backing, the magazine, first published in 2010, is not able to come out as a regular quarterly. But the attempt has been hailed universally. It is hosted in pdf format in www.vallinam.com.my.

Indian Media: Why journalists hate trolls

Pagal Patrakar (in his blog – http://blog.fakingnews.com) writes without any screaming and shouting in plain English and without any intellectual nonsense or any stern voice and constipated faces either, about how journalists thinks that it is their duty, as a journalist, to show “mirror to the society” and not let anyone show the the mirror:

..For them(journalists) , a troll is anyone who is not following the rules and decorum of a civilized communication, and who argues without showing much respect to logic.

At this point of time, some of the top journalists leading the crusade against trolls would claim that their objection is only to the abusive and hateful trolls. I have reasons to believe that this is just an excuse.

The thought process (no lateral thinking involved here) behind creating such a list is rooted in a journalist’s arrogated right to frame rules and decorum for a public debate…..However, more than the anarchic nature of Twitter (and much of the virtual world) and a public display of love towards civilized discourse, a journalist’s problem with Twitter arises from the fact that traditional journalism is ill-conceived to allow and incorporate feedback and criticism.

……..I’ve been a (television) journalist myself (in pre-Facebook and pre-Twitter era) and don’t remember a single editorial meeting that was called in to discuss feedback. In fact, there was no mechanism to collect public feedback at all.

The only ‘feedback’ that we were responding to was weekly TRPs. There were weekly meetings to analyze what type of program gathered the highest TRP and how to repeat the “success”. And I guess things haven’t changed much since then.

Most of what is being dismissed as trolling by journalists (not all of them, I must admit; many of them are doing really good on Twitter) are actually instant and angry feedback by their ‘consumers’.

Traditional journalism, as an institution, has always seen itself as ‘giving feedback’ to the society and hasn’t thought it necessary to ‘take feedback’.

I remember Indian Express editor Shekhar Gupta’s interview with Star News (now ABP News) after the coup-story controversy where he claimed that a member of Team Anna (most probably Arvind Kejriwal) had asked him whether Indian Express took feedback from the readers on what it publishes (Express had published a string of stories ‘exposing’ Team Anna before).

Shekhar Gupta thought that the suggestion (about taking feedback) was irrelevant as it was his duty, as a journalist, to show “mirror to the society” (his words) and not let anyone show him the mirror (my words).

A bulk of the problems of journalists with Twitter is rooted in this nature of journalism, where feedback is not deemed necessary, in fact, it’s seen as an unpleasant development, something they happily dismiss as trolling.

Read the full post : Why journalists hate trolls