Trust

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“We are never so vulnerable than when we trust someone, but paradoxically, if you cannot trust, neither can you find love.” (Walter Anderson)

I do not bestow my trust easily, but when I do its like a complete and unabridged version of a long gone classic. So when I do let my guard down, I do not expect to be confronted with a breach of trust.

But what if it does happen? Are we to give up years of happiness and memories on the basis of that one act of betrayal?

We constantly hear of celebrity couples and their spats. Cheryl Cole has been accused of still harboring feelings of amore for her philandering ex-husband Ashley Cole.

While we may ridicule their devotion to these guys, is it really that easy to let go of love or friendship or any other relationship based on trust.

And the even bigger problem, once betrayed what chance does the relationship have.

“Trust is like a vase, once its broken, you can fix it but it will never be the same again.”

So what is the solution really? Do you simply let go and live like nothing has happened. That is definitely not going to help, because of the tremendous build up of unsaid emotions.

How long can you live on and pretend nothing has happened? At some point, it is bound to bubble up and spill over. And then the situation becomes catastrophic.

I am scared. Scared to trust anyone. I don’t want to make myself that vulnerable anymore.

I am sure there are millions of people out there, who feel the exact same thing. Is there ever going to be redemption for us?

“You may be deceived if you trust too much, but you will live in torment if we don’t trust enough.” (Frank  Crane)

Is a lifetime of torture awaiting me?

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Media Meltdown

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The digital age has beckoned the end of the media industry as we know it.

Technology, especially the advent of the internet, has resulted in the complete remodeling of media business models. the power to control no longer rests in the hands of the media moguls, it is the audience that has emerged supreme, interpolating interactive features of the internet to the best of their advantage.

The days are gone when one would wake up to the rustle of a newspaper.
It is now the clicks and taps of high end laptops and Ipads that are
the chosen aids for a consumer of news.

Not only do these boast of superior variety in content, most online news forums are free.Anything that is free is automatically attractive. Since the audiences are moving into the internet increasingly, advertisers too do not want to be far behind.

This has bled media houses dry with lack of revenue and decreased circulation.

Connected device adoption and a broader process of digitization are permanently and irrevocably changing the way in which customers interact with products and services.

According to Tim O Reilly and his Web 2.0, the secret to the success of digitization is the nature of interactivity that it offers.The real threat is that, this phenomenon is not going to be restricted to the media and news industry.

It is now certain that the a similar phenomenon of digitization will eventually transform all industries, that companies lose control of
their customers when new technology enables them to interact with
products on their own terms.

Revenues will be heavily threatened with customers and audiences choosing the cheaper and more interactive model.This has effectively revolutionized marketing strategies.

The media industry in an effort to recover lost ground had to accept the digital influx into their processes. They had to weave their marketing
strategies around this.

Vogue, Telegraph and the BBC saw a huge surge in readership when they introduced their IPAD versions.As with everything else, the media meltdown is indication enough of the fact that if all products and services are not made digital savvy,there will be a serious loss of revenue.

So evolve your strategies or be the loser!

Influenced by the Stars

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In a room filled with mist, she sat alone. A crystal ball glistened under her gnarled hands. She beckoned me towards her. “Come let me tell you secrets from your future.”, she crooned.

Sounds like mumbo jumbo? Well fortunately or unfortunately, this is something that happens very often in places specializing in psychic readings.

In a quest for that ever elusive thing called happiness and contentment, people are turning to the mysteries of the occult. All forms of astrology are flourishing today and all of them promise to solve all your problems.

I have a friend who is a tarot card reader and I have seen people flock to her with myriads of questions ranging from love to work to family and sex. My entire family is influenced by the decisions of the family astrologer, following his suggestions to the hilt.

In India there was always a fascination with the occult. The mysteries of psychic interpretation shrouded in the cloak of uncertainty influenced many. But now astrology in all its forms are welcomed the world over.

A parapsychology student at Cornell, attributed it to people trying to reconnect with the spiritual in a world that is increasingly becoming more and more chaotic. But will they find the answers they want in tarot or crystal balls.

“Its just a gimmick to trap vulnerable people. My family spends a lot of money consulting the astrologer. Like everything else this too is a marketing strategy for a business”, says Araav Sen, a journalist.

But some people swear by the results that the occult brings them. A friend going through a rather painful divorce found solace in the tarot readings telling her a man would soon enter her life. And guess what, he did!

I myself have found myself enchanted by the results of my tarot readings. I know people whose lives have turned around after listening to their astrologers.

But I also know of situations where it has turned completely upside down. A family friend was married off to her husband after the astrologers thumbs up. A few months into the marriage, he died in an accident.

Should we really become obsessed with the occult? Is it really the answer to all our problems?

Ecstacy in Murder

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Edgar Jiminez or ‘THE CLOAK as he calls himself, the 14 year old boy imprisoned for allegedly beheading four people in Mexico. And his excuse- he was high on weed.

The supposed drug cartel assassin was imprisoned after photos of his unimaginable drug induced cruelty appeared on the internet. Of course he claims to have been forced into the killings. But so what?

The fact remains that this boy, who should have been in school, was busy killing fellow individuals all because of his drug addiction.

Increasing the world over

Even more frightening is the fact this is not an isolated event. According to the NY Daily News, there were 69 drug induced killings in ONE day in Mexico. And the figures are just increasing day by day.

And Mexico is not the only place where these alarming incidents are happening. Nepal too has reported an alarming increase in the number of cruel murders under the haze of marijuana.

Drug abuse the world over is increasing, with a drastic mushrooming of drug trade in developing and underdeveloped areas of the world. The Drug mafia target these poor nations where people are waiting for any chance to escape the socio-political drama.

Its a dead end situation

They target their victims young. Edgar was introduced to weed when he was just 12. This way they become addicted at a really young age. And it is almost impossible to wean them away from drugs.

When we hear about celebrity drug abuse, I think we feel disgust and repulsion for the said celebs. But in cases like these, I am scared. You could never know, who is going to target you in drug induced hate.

Even your little boy or girl could come into contact with these drugs. That is what makes the situation uncontrollable. The networks of drug trade are far flung and too wide for us to effectively stop it forever.

These young people cannot afford to go to fancy rehab facilities and try to get their lives back. There is a forever to their torture at most times…

Advertising news

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The Daily Telegraph, an enterprise that boasts of one of the most superior readership in ‘quality press’ in Britain. And the king of the broadsheet format, the newspaper confesses to relying on the fodder of advertising.

This only goes on to show the focus that advertising has in the sphere of news. Most news organization confess to relying heavily on the machinations of the commercial aspect for their very survival.

This has resulted in a direct change in the roles of a journalist. Not only does the journalist need to keep in mind the advertising strategy of their organization,they also need to be equipped in the arts of marketing.

Sometimes journalists are required to write in an advertorial style. And this has led to several clashes in the ideologies of journalism, with crusaders for ‘pure’ journalism asking for a clear demarcation for the editorial and advertising departments.

But that line between the two facets of a newspaper are becoming increasingly vague.

The adverts despite being not a part of the ‘actual’ contents of a newspaper are taking over more space in newspapers today. Many newspapers admit to close to 60:40 ratio of advertising versus content.

This however could mean excessive restrictions on editorial control of content in newspapers.

A certain newspaper in India which carries a great deal of advertisements from a certain liquor company, never takes a stand about the legal age for drinking, drunk driving and so on.

In such cases the integrity of news is challenged. Readers could easily become disillusioned with the unabashed attempt of newspapers to glorify products or services appearing in the adverts.

Although The Daily Telegraph, is clear that the editorial takes precedence over the advertising, many smaller news organizations may face such a dilemma very often, because of the excess dependency from advertising revenues.

The time when journalists bled newspaper , is long gone! It is now a commercial ball game.

On Life

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Today a young girl, celebrating her first salary, got into a car after a celebratory dinner, and never got up again. A celebration of life, but one that snatched the very life from her.

All around you, you hear of people who have lost loved ones in the most bizarre ways imaginable, and you think that this could not possibly happen to you, but sometimes it just does.

Throughout our lives we are focussed on planning the life that we have. The money, the career, the love life, all are planned to perfection. But in all this planning we are probably missing out on living to the fullest.

I know it sounds cliched. But the fact is, that you don’t know which is the last breath you or someone else is taking. It doesn’t help to know that someone you did not resolve matters with is no more. No matter how much you regret it, its not something you can wipe out.

Indifference

And I have noticed increasingly that people are becoming more and more immune to another person’s sorrow. But what they fail to think in that moment of nonchalance, is that nobody is spared the cruelties of life.

We might think we are, but it will hit you when you least expect it. And then it too late to sympathise with someones loss because now you are forced to empathise.

Ironies

While fate cruelly snatches life away from all around us, we see others willingly letting life die. The rates of abortions around the world is increasing by many fold.

Many a time expectant mothers are forced to terminate the life growing inside them. How much harder do you think it is for a person to kill someone knowing they are doing it? Is it harder than coping with the unexpected loss of life?

A Journalist with a Cause

For Filipa Simas, journalism is a means of making a difference.

“When I was about six, I saw a lot of poor people in the neighbourhood. Later I realised that, journalism for me, was about being the voice of people like them. The means for them to get their stories across. “

Growing up in the sun-kissed islands of Azeros in Portugal, Filipa was a different kind of little girl. She caught the journalism bug by the time she was a mere three and spent hours watching and reading news!

“ I would stand and watch news for hours ignoring the cartoons and all the other things. I just loved news. And I have always known I wanted to be a journalist.”

Life before Journalism

Born in Azeros and raised in Lisbon, Filipa spent her childhood with her parents and elder siblings. She describes her parents as completely supportive of everything she does and that all they want is to see her happy.

After her schooling in Portugal, she pursued a five-year degree in the Catholican University of Portugal, in social communication and journalism. This paved a way for her journalism fervour to really catch on.

Filipa says that the defining moment in her young life was a trip as missionary to Africa. Working with children and teachers in Canchungo shaped her perception of what was really important and life in general.

“ I tend to look at the good things about something. And during my time there I realised the importance of the little things in life.”

Life as an Active Journalist

With her clouded green eyes lighting up and arms unconsciously flailing, Filipa describes her foray into journalism.

She spent her first few years exploring the print media. Magazines, newspapers, and anything that could be read, she tried it!

But then a chance encounter brought her the love of her life. Broadcast. Fate intervened in her promising print career and she got a coveted job with the National TV in Portugal.

“I loved to write so much that I never gave a thought to TV. But when I discovered it, I was hooked. You get such a different perspective with TV. I used to feel like a director, seeing everything from a different perspective.”

After five years as a TV journalist, Filipa chose to quit and spread her wings.

“I just wanted to move on. When you are working as a journalist, you don’t wait to think. I wanted to see people around the world, and see what their perspectives of journalism.”

Armed with a multicultural perspective on journalism, Filipa Simas is ready to redefine journalism as we know it today!