narayani khadka
Posted September 20, 2017 from Nepal


“You write so well, you should publish your poems and other articles in daily newspaper” recommends one of my friends after reading my poems. After people come to know that I write poetry and I have interest in writing, they ask me “how many articles have you got published in newspapers?” I reply with a smile “not a single one.

The media portrays picture of the society and the nation. With the advancement of media these days we have indispensable relationship with the media whether it be print media or visual media.

I had written an article describing the hurdles of people during the implicit blockade in Nepal by the neighboring country India. With the hope of getting it published. I sent it to the XYZ Newspaper, which is very popular media house in Nepal. Every day I bought the paper, scanned the paper hoping to see my article get published. I thought this reputed newspaper company receives thousands of articles from people like me that is why my article is in the queue. But my article was never published. I did not give up easily. I send some other articles thrice.

When I shared my struggle with my friend she told me “Unless you have a political recognition, you are a well-known writer and your work is recommended by the high profiled personalities it is useless to dream that your creation will be provided space in such a renowned newspaper. She shared her similar story with me.

I was surprise to hear her words. Few years later one of my high school friend got employed in the head office of the same media house, I asked him” how can I get my works get published?” he confidently replied that if you do it on your own the procedure is really long and it takes time as it goes through various stages of selection, renown and established writers get the first priorities, an ordinary person has very rare chance of getting published. But if I talk with my seniors there is some probability to get things done.

I was astonished to know about the harsh reality. The very conversation contradicted with everything I read about the “impartial, unbiased media”. How can people’s opinion, difficulties and voice be heard if they are not provided with a space in media in a democratic society? How can we assume that XYZ media house is an unbiased media house which respects people’s voice without being biased if people’s genuine voice is overshadowed by nepotism and favoritism? Is that even a media?

I was sad and disappointed not because I couldn’t see my name in daily newspaper, I couldn’t be famous. But the reason was people’s voice does not matter, voices remain unheard….

About a year ago Nepalese media was full of a story of an abandoned women for months. People scolded and threw ruthless criticisms to the family that abandoned her. But the same news later turned out to be scandal. Exaggeration of false news not only destroyed the reputation connected with them but it also hurt the feeling and emotions of citizens. A media should respect the feeling of its people.

Once I was going through the online news, my eyes stopped in a heading which not only astonished me but almost broke my heart it was “gang rape in a filmy style”. I read the whole news and I was confused whether this is a title of news to let people know that a girl is raped or this is a news to provoke guys to rape, quick guide how to rape a girl in filmy style. This is so embarrassing that a media house, journalist being a third organ of a state represent such a sensitive issue in such a cheesy way. Objectification of female, ridiculing women’s issues, nepotism and yellow journalism are the major issues in Nepalese Media.

Be it from Nepalese media or any other media I totally oppose such media traits. If the media cannot represent voice of citizens, present the issues, if it rests on recommendation of elites for the publication of citizen’s voice if the voice of people remains then it is no use of having such media in the name of pillars of democracy. For free and fair media journalists, media houses and citizens should work in their respective area and be sensitive towards the power of media. Government should implement the laws effectively to check irregularities of media in order to create a society where voice of people is heard and respected.

This story was submitted in response to Media in Our Lives.

Comments 2

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Jill Langhus
Sep 22, 2017
Sep 22, 2017

Hi Narayani. Thanks for sharing your story on the lack of objectivity and sensationalism in the media. Unfortunately, I think this exists across all media in the world, or at least a lot of it. I'm by no means condoning it, I just feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the task at hand when I think of how it could be versus what the reality is. Have you contacted any government officials to try to bring free, objective speech back to the media in your area?

Jackie Lidubwi
Oct 05, 2017
Oct 05, 2017

Sad this is happening in this era, media is supposed to be the voice of the voiceless, that is why it is the forth estate. I would encourage you to not tire but grap the opportunity of emerging new media like blogs, facebook, and others to pass your messege to the world