Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Daya Kishan Thussu's New Book: Communicating India’s Soft Power: Buddha to Bollywood

Communicating India’s Soft Power: Buddha to Bollywood

By Daya Kishan Thussu

Global Public Diplomacy Series, Palgrave/Macmillan, New York, 230 Pages, October 2013 

ISBN: 9781137027887, Order online at

Book Description
In recent years, India has emerged as a major economic and political power: on the basis of purchasing-power parity, it was the world’s third largest economy in 2012. Yet the country’s cultural influence outside India has not been adequately analysed in academic discourses. As the world’s largest democracy with a vibrant and pluralist media system, India offers an excellent case study of the power of culture and communication in the age of mediated international relations. This book, a pioneering attempt, from an international communication/media perspective, is aimed to fill the existing gap in scholarship in this area. The discussion of India’s rising soft power is located within a historical context, thus problematizing the notion of Soft Power itself. The book is aimed at university courses on global media/international relations/area studies - among others.

About the Author
Daya Kishan Thussu is Professor of International Communication and the Co-Director of the India Media Centre at the University of Westminster in London. With a PhD in International Relations from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, he is the founder and Managing Editor of the Sage journal Global Media and Communication. Among his key publications are: Media and Terrorism: Global Perspectives (Sage, 2012); Internationalizing Media Studies (Routledge, 2009); News as Entertainment: The Rise of Global Infotainment (Sage, 2007); Media on the Move: Global Flow and Contra-Flow (Routledge, 2007); International Communication - Continuity and Change, third edition (Bloomsbury Academic, forthcoming); and Electronic Empires - Global Media and Local Resistance (Arnold, 1998).

1   De-Americanizing Soft Power
2   Historical Context of India’s Soft Power
3   India Abroad: the Diasporic Dividend
4   Software for Soft Power
5   Culture as Soft Power – Bollywood and Beyond
6   Branding India – a Public-Private Partnership

‘Those acquainted with Daya Thussu as the editor of the respected journal Global Media and Communication and his earlier publications will not be surprised by this excellent, comprehensive yet brief survey of the scope and limits of India’s Soft Power and the country’s changing status in global public culture and media. This book will remain a powerful aid to scholars and researchers seeking clues to the many undercurrents in India’s definition of its global presence and the projection of that self-definition through its public diplomacy.’ Professor Ashis Nandy, Senior Honorary Fellow, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi

‘Daya Thussu elegantly places India’s Soft Power in its historical and cultural framework, deftly managing the geopolitical and technological context. His analysis is innovative and persuasive,  as is fitting in telling a grand tale of a grand Indian narrative’.  Professor Monroe Price, Director, Center for Global Communication Studies, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania, USA

‘Daya Thussu’s Communicating India's Soft Power: Buddha to Bollywood rescues the concept of soft power from American hands and applies it insightfully to India, and the concept is made richer and more useful as a result.  With its dynamic and prosperous diaspora, the growing global popularity of its spiritual beliefs and practice, its reach as a global economic and technological powerhouse, and even its cherished cuisine, India’s growing soft power potential is evident.  Yet Thussu also takes a hard look at the impediments that stand in the way of India taking full advantage of its soft power appeal. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in broadening their understanding of the role of soft power in foreign affairs.’  Professor Steven Livingston, Professor of Media and Public Affairs and International Affairs, George Washington University, USA

‘A balanced, learned and historically informed analysis of India’s global presence and the soft power that accompanies it. The book contains many important insights and should be of value to decision makers and general public alike.’  Lord Bhikhu Parekh, Emeritus Professor, University of Westminster, UK

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The Hindu’ reinstates family members at helm of affairs

‘The Hindu’ reinstates family members at helm of affairs

Professional Editor, CEO Eased Out


Chennai: A little less than two years after it brought in professionals from outside the family to head the editorial and business wings of the company, Kasturi & Sons Limited (KSL), the publishers of ‘The Hindu’ daily, carried out drastic changes on Monday in the leadership structure by bringing in family members at the helm of affairs and easing out the editor and the company’s CEO. 
    The KSL board of directors appointed N Ravi as the editor-in-chief of ‘The Hindu’, replacing Siddharth Varadarajan, who took over from N Ram in January last year. N Ram will now be the chairman of the board, and Malini Parthasarathy, who left the paper as its executive editor in 2011 and now heads The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy, is back as ‘The Hindu’ editor. 
    Monday’s board meeting 
also decided to abolish the post of CEO, which was held by Arun Anant since it was created around the last revamp. Anant’s new role is yet to be defined. He declined to comment when contacted. 
    In what appears to be a sharp indictment of Varadarajan and Anant, a statement signed by N Ram (who had brought in these two), said: “The decision to make deep-going changes was made chiefly on the ground that there were recurrent violations and defiance of the framework of the institution’s longstanding values on the business side, and recurrent violations and defiance of ‘Living Our Values’, the mandatory Code of Editorial Values applicable to ‘The Hindu’.” He added that the “whole effort was to restore employee morale, good industrial relations” and the trust of the newspaper’s readers. 
    Varadarajan, who was redesignated as the “contributing editor and senior columnist”, has submitted his resignation. Asked about alleged violations of policy under his stewardship, he told TOI, “If indeed policies or editorial values were flouted, the 
solution would have been to get another professional editor. The fact that the owners have come back into editorial itself provides the answer to your question.” 
    He added, “Of course, there were occasional instances of editorialising that slipped in, just as they did when Mr Ram or Mr Ravi edited ‘The Hindu’ earlier. But I fear this is merely an excuse to reverse the earlier decision to professionalise the newspaper.” 
    By late evening, a revolt was brewing from within as six directors¸ all members of the Hindu family, issued a notice saying, “With reference to the announcement posted by the chairman of the board, the following directors wish to communicate to the staff that they opposed the board resolution that seeks to change the editorial and business structure assigning new responsibilities and designations to the directors, CEO and editor...The vote on said resolution was tied 6-6 and was passed only with a casting vote of the chairman, Mr N Ram. The undersigned wish to declare this casting vote invalid and will contest the decision through an appro
priate mechanism.” 
    Ravi, the current editor-inchief, had resigned as the paper’s editor in July 2011, along with other family members Malini Parthasarathy and Nirmala Lakshman, who was the joint editor, after Ram insisted on “separation of ownership from management on the editorial as well as the business side.” Varadarajan took over as editor on January 10, 2012 after Ram, who held the post for eight years. That marked the conclusion of a series of debates within the family since 2009, starting with the appointment of N Balaji as the managing director of Kasturi & Sons. 
    On April 20, 2011, about three months before his exit, Ravi, in a bitter letter to ‘The Hindu’ employees, said Ram and some of the directors at the meeting of the board two days earlier had sought to remove him and appoint Siddharth Varadarajan. He called it a “shocking display of bad faith that has left me deeply anguished” and that they were entering “the second, and what might turn out to be a prolonged, phase of conflict and turbulence in the institution.”

Also read: 

Monday, 21 October 2013

Seminar On Media Issues and Social Transformation in Delhi in January

Prof Ambrish Saxena and Dr Sunil Kr Mishra have sent in the following notification: 

National Seminar
Media Issues and Social Transformation – MIST 2014
Organised by
Vivekananda School of Journalism and Mass Communication
January 10, 11 and 12, 2014
Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies (VIPS)
[Affiliated to Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi]
AU Block, Outer Ring Road, Pitampura, New Delhi

Sub Themes of the Seminar:
1.      Media and Rural Development
2.      Cinema and Society
3.      Women Empowerment and Media
4.      RTI and Media
5.      Media and Democracy
6.      Environmental Issues in Media
7.      Impact of Contemporary Media on Cultural Discourse
8.      Social Media as Catalyst for Social Change
9.      Media, Ethics and Social Justice
10.  Folk Media in Rural India

Special Attraction:
·         Incentive for papers in HINDI
·         Certificates to be given the same day
·         Visit of historical monuments in Delhi
·         Publication of papers in books with ISBN
(To be released during the seminar)

Registration Fee:

Academicians/Professionals [Paper presenter]
 Paper in English
Rs 2,000/-
Academicians/Professionals [Paper presenter]
 Paper in Hindi
Rs 1,500/-
Academicians/Professionals [Participation only]
 Paper in English
Rs 1,500/-
Academicians/Professionals [Participation only]
 Paper in Hindi
 Rs 1,000/-
Research Scholars [Paper presenter]
Paper in English
Rs 1,250/-
Research Scholars [Paper presenter]
 Paper in Hindi
Rs 1,000/-
Research Scholars [Participation only]
Paper in English
Rs 1,000/-
Research Scholars [Participation only]
 Paper in Hindi
 Rs 0,750/-
Students [Presentation/Participation]
 Any language
Rs 0,500/-
Deadlines for Submission:

Deadline for submission of Abstracts
November 05, 2013
Notification of Abstract
November 15, 2013
Deadline for Registration
November 30, 2013
Deadline for Submission of Full Paper
December 15, 2013
Deadline for publication of Abstract
December 30, 2013
Deadline for publication of Seminar Papers
January 05, 2014
Payment Mode:
Registration fee should be submitted through Demand Draft, in favour of Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies, payable at Delhi
Registration Fee Includes:
1. Meals and Refreshment
2. Seminar kit and other related material
1.      VIPS will provide the necessary help to delegates for getting accommodation in the vicinity of the venue at reasonable rates.
2.      Requests (to be made till December 15, 2013) for the same will be entertained only from outstation delegates.
Length of Abstract: 200 - 300 words 
Along with brief Introduction of Author / co-author: Max 100 words
Format of the Full Paper:
Title of paper: Times New Roman 14 Bold caps and Kurtidev (for hindi: font size 14 for title and 12 for running matter)
After one space: author, affiliation, e-mail in font 11 italics.
Leave one space. Then Abstract title in 12 bold; Abstract in Times New Roman font 11 justified.
Main text of paper: Titles in Times New Roman 12 bold caps; Text in Times New Roman 11 justified.
Subheadings: Times New Roman 11 bold italics.
Figures: Title should be at the bottom of figure.
Tables: Title to be at top of table.
References: Author (year), Paper title, Conf./book/journal title, Vol., No., pp.
References should be cited in text in brackets (author, year). 
Submission of Abstract and Paper:
·         Submit the Abstract and the Full Paper by email
·         Do not send hard copies of the abstract/paper

Seminar Convenor:
Prof. Ambrish Saxena
Seminar Co-Convenor:
Dr Sunil Kr Mishra


Thursday, 17 October 2013

So Why Not 29?

This is from Shashi :
Thank you Shashi.

From AJR,   October/November 2007

So Why Not 29?   

Why did reporters for years end their stories by writing “-30-”?
By Hadass Kogan

Each October for the past eight years, students in Louise Reynolds' Introduction to Journalism class at Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, Maryland, have been offered extra credit if they can solve one of journalism's lingering mysteries: Why did reporters for years end their stories by writing "-30-"?
"Journalism is so full of funny phrases and traditions," Reynolds says. "I wanted the kids to know there was a long tradition behind each of these terms and style rules and know that it didn't come out of nowhere."
The use of the symbol was once so prevalent that it made its way into Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary, which says 30 is "a sign of completion." But the tradition of using it to cap off a piece of sprightly copy dropped off considerably when the computer replaced the typewriter — the what? — in America's newsrooms. So it's a term whose meaning is lost on many younger journalists.
The venerable "-30-" caused some mischief in late July at the New York Times when a reporter typed it at the end of his article about the shooting of two police officers in Brooklyn. The published version of the story said that a trial was scheduled for February 30, which doesn't occur even in the leapest of leap years. Said a subsequent Times correction: "The error occurred when an editor saw the symbol '-30-' typed at the bottom of the reporter's article and combined it with the last word, 'February.'"
So where did the term originate? Some say the mark began during a time when stories were submitted via telegraph, with "-30-" denoting "the end" in Morse code. Another theory suggests that the first telegraphed news story had 30 words. Others claim the "-30-" comes from a time when stories were written in longhand — X marked the end of a sentence, XX the end of a paragraph and XXX meant the end of a story. The Roman numerals XXX translate to 30.
But these are hardly the only explanations, theories and guesses for the rise of "-30-". It is rumored that a letter to an East India company ended with "80," a figure meaning "farewell" in Bengali. The symbol supposedly was misread, changed to 30 and took root. Some say the mark comes from the fact that press offices closed at 3 o'clock. And there's the theory that 30 was the code for a telegraph operator who stayed at his post during a breaking news story until his death 30 hours later — versions of that story even include that the unfortunate operator hit two keys on his machine when he collapsed. Which ones? That's right, 3 and 0.
Julie Williams, a professor of journalism and mass communication at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama, says the guessing game over "-30-" has taken on a life of its own, in part because the ambiguity leaves it open to a wide array of interpretations. "Because it's so obviously not intuitive, you can't tell what it means," she says. "I think people were anxious to come up with explanations for it."
Or maybe "-30-" is just another way for journalists to suggest that theirs is cooler than other professions. "I'm not sure that it's any more of a mystery than a lot of other things," says Linda Steiner, who teaches at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland. "I think journalists have always liked to create odd or weird names for things that they do or conventions that they have."
For most, the origin of "-30-" is less important than what it represents, a remnant of a bygone era when shouts of "copy" echoed through the newsroom and computers seemed the stuff of science fiction.
"It was just what one did. I don't know the origin or what I was told," says Peter Binzen, 84, a longtime reporter, editor and columnist at the Philadelphia Bulletin and Philadelphia Inquirer. "I don't suppose any reporter under 50 has used it."
Don Harrison, 79, editor of Milestones, a monthly newspaper published by the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging, and a former Philadelphia newsman, says that "-30-", as well as "#" and "end it," were essential for writing stories on deadline. "You had to use something when you were typing because you would write two or three paragraphs on deadline," Harrison says. "Then the copyboy would pick it up and send it to the composing room. It was necessary [to have] some way to say, 'This is it, it's over... Put a head on it and put it in the next day's paper.'"
Stephen Dixon, a former professor at Johns Hopkins University, even titled his 1999 book "30" to acknowledge the thematic endings the main character (who happens to be a former newsman) experiences throughout the novel. His publisher added the subtitle "Pieces of a Novel" because he worried that nobody in the Internet era would understand the book's title. Perhaps the publisher was on to something — Dixon ended up writing a letter to the editor complaining about a book review that seemed to totally miss the meaning of the novel's title and its relationship to the theme of endings in the book.
Chicago newsman Charles Madigan not so cheerily named his new book, a selection of essays about the decline of the newspaper business, "-30-: The Collapse of the Great American Newspaper."
So even though it's an anachronism, "-30-" continues to make its presence felt. After not using the symbol for years, Binzen even chose to end his 56-year newspaper career in 2005 with a farewell column that concluded with, what else, "-30-".

Kogan ( is a former AJR editorial assistant. She thought 30 was just another number before embarking on this assignment.


Sunday, 13 October 2013

Kalbag steps down as the editor of four magazines of the India Today Group

Kalbag steps down as the editor of four magazines of the India Today Group - Harvard Business Review, Business Today, Money Today and Gadgets & Gizmos.

Chaitanya Kalbag, who started his second stint at the India Today Group three and a half years ago as the editor of four magazines (Business Today, Money Today, Harvard Business Review and Gadgets and Gizmos), has decided to step down from his position and bid adieu to the group.

He will leave the organisation by the end of October. Though his three year contract with the group ended in July this year, he continued his stint to find his successor.
Speaking to afaqs!, Kalbag says that he plans to focus more on writing books, increasing his web presence, teaching and consulting.
He started his career in 1974 and has 40 years of experience.
Before joining India Today for his second stint, between 2008 and 2009, he was publishing director with LexisNexis Butterworths, a publishing house, and was responsible for many books for the bench and the bar.
Kalbag began working as an assistant editor at a Mumbai newspaper for youth, titled Hi. He then edited TransIndia, a news magazine for Indians in the United States and wrote some path breaking stories for New Delhi, a magazine from the ABP Group, before moving to India Today in 1981, where he won the group's first two journalism awards for investigative and human rights reporting.
He later joined Reuters in 1983 and worked there for the next 23 years, reporting on major stories like the Punjab crisis, Operation Blue Star, the Bhopal gas disaster and others. His first overseas assignment was in the Philippines in 1986, where he covered everything from coup attempts to the country's debt crisis.
His last assignment with the global news agency was as managing editor for Asia - the first Asian to head an entire editorial region in Reuters' 151-year history. In this role, he headed a team of 750 journalists in Reuters text, television and picture operations across 35 countries from Afghanistan to New Zealand.
In 2006, he returned to India as editor-in-chief of Hindustan Times.
Kalbag has reported from or worked in China, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, The Philippines, Iran, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia and South Africa.
He has also won several awards in his career, including the Rajika Kripalani Young Journalist Award in 1977, the Sanskriti Award for Journalism for 1982, and the India Today-PUCL Human Rights Reporting Award in 1983 for his investigations of fake encounters in Uttar Pradesh and the insurgencies in Northeast India. He was also conferred with the Bharat Shiromani Award in 2007.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Workshop for Journalists: Understanding the Role of India’s Military

Following from the Director, Press Institute of India: 

Today’s young journalists need the knowledge and skills necessary to report accurately, reliably, completely and with context on events and issues related to India's national security interests and objectives. National security comprises not only India's comprehensive national strength but also several critical sectors, one of the most important being India’s Military or the Army. 
Journalists need to understand how the Army functions, its role and contemporary form, and how it is positioning itself to meet future challenges. Such knowledge must be imparted, especially to reporters on the ground and editors at the desk.
To help young journalists become better informed, the Press Institute of India, Chennai, an independent non-profit organisation focused on sustaining high and responsible standards of journalism, in its landmark 50th year, and the Institute of Contemporary Studies Bangalore, a multi-expertise think-tank specalising in national security and foreign policy affairs, will conduct a two-day workshop on Understanding the Role of India’s Military, where foremost experts will offer perspective and advice, with an emphasis on public interest. This, the second in a series of two-day workshops, will be held on 30-31st October 2013 at an army facility in Bangalore.
The series of workshops (the first was on India’s National Security Interests and Objectives) is meant to equip young journalists with knowledge and skills to report on national security issues as well as on military and civil subjects in ways that have relevance and meaning to a variety of audiences. The overall objective is to better empower the journalist.

Journalists with five to eight years of experience in a newspaper, magazine or television channel are encouraged to attend. To register, please fill the form attached and send it along with payment. 

Registration fee is Rs 4500. Payment can be made by DD/ payable-at-par cheque favouring Press Institute of India and mailed to the Director, Press Institute of India, 2nd Main Road, Taramani CPT Campus, Chennai 600113. Last date for registration is 28th October 2013.