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Blogging: The Parallel Journalism

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Shhravya Rav:

Blog is a medium of expression. It gives voice to the untold and a platform to the unheard. Be it social activists, poets, actors, journalists, travel writers, authors or the big ones from music to science, everybody is into blogging these days.

A blog derives its name from web log. A blog is an online space that is managed by individual(s). Blogs usually provide information about a particular subject (niche). It is more like a commentary on a given subject. Some even function as online personal journal and one is least expected to find matters of relevance in such types of blogs.

Blogs allow you to share your thoughts and ideas with space as no constraint. Space and length are no deterrents for a blogger. Some hardcore bloggers see it as a way to bond with the world.

The thing about blogging is the personal tone attatched to it. In media houses, there are certain regulations laid down which a journalist has to adhere to. But, on blogs, there are no such restraints. Journalism combined with your personal views on a matter can spice up your article.

The Rathergate scandal/60 minute scandal in which presenter Dan Rather presented faulty documents of the Former US President Bush’s military service record had become the defining point in the world of blogs since, it was the Bloggers who had declared that the documents presented were fake and owing to pressure from all quarters, the CBS apologized for its wrong and unethical journalism. This, by many is viewed as the real advent of blogs as the newest form of journalism.

Since then, blogging has in itself become a new form of mass-media. Another important aspect of blogging is that it is interactive. Readers can leave a comment and this interaction helps enrich both the blogger and the reader ultimately enhancing the content. It is a two way process in which everybody learns, and grows.

Many argue that a blogger and a journalist connot be regarded as being equal. A blogger, many opine, provides one with the information he presumes to be correct. Political blogs debate and decide the future of a political movement, or a candidate. One blogs whatever comes to one’s mind without evaluating the pros and cons of it. Many a time this has resulted in unforeseen reversals and defamation especially when one is blogging about political campaigns or celebrities. A blog is all about sharing what you know and journalism is simply about what people ought to know. There is a stark difference between both of them but, in recent times the lines between them seem to blur.

Blogging has come to be a part and parcel of journalism. It has joined the main stream media. It has also grown mature and responsible over the years.

For instance we have The Huffington Post which is popularly known as the internet newspaper and covers almost everything that happens around the world. Likewise there are Mashable and Gizmodo which blog about social media and all the latest gadgets, respectively. Another big one is Gawker which is considered as the most successful company in the blog-oriented journalism. The objectivity which is the foundational word in journalism is slowly finding its way in the blogger’s dictionary, however, it is yet to emerge as a powerful and inherent quality.

Now, here comes the question – Are blogs the new journalism? Are bloggers journalists? What do you think? Drop in a message below or mail us at editor@youthkiawaaz.com

You must be to comment.
  1. YouthKiAwaaz (Youth Ki Awaaz)

    Is blogging the all new journalism? We say yes, what do you think?
    http://www.youthkiawaaz.com/2010/07/blogging-the-parallel-journalism/

    1. nivedita jha

      Yes… blogging has an effect on journalism… I dont know whether in today scenario people are seeing journalism as a point of money earning process and henceforthjoining it for a name sake… but honestly journalism should be considered as a matter of intrest and passion…there are students who take writing and oration as a matter of hobby, love and they consider Iit as there strength… with the changing trends there are 100 of universities opening but thepower of excellence Iin students are not coming with the heart but as an substitute.. as there is no engineering seats left lets take up media studies has become attitude of many… I dont say excellence are in marks or how intelligentbrilliant student yoy are born.. but a 50% grade holder can alsi be a journalist if the person has an full intrest in the field of creative writing and oration any one of them… I have friemds with me who thave taken up journalism as a there graduation course but the intrest to do well and take up issues as a media personality and solve them through their power Iis negligent… I would earnestly request students, people to grab the opportunities start writing on blogs.. if they have REAL interest.. passion leads to success… and I also ask settled journalist to provide more and more opportunities to students who are trying to become a real YOUTH KI AWAAZ….

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

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A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

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A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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