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Finding their voice Examining some Internet-based initiatives that are changing the face of the Indian media industry: An exploratory study Paromita Pain. Free Powerpoint Templates.

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Finding their voice

Examining some Internet-based initiatives that are changing the face of the Indian media industry: An exploratory study

Paromita Pain

Free Powerpoint Templates

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Citizen journalism is on the rise in the Indian sub-continent. Community-based media stations are not new in the country. But lately, certain citizen driven are coming into prominence. They weren’t all started to cater to women but began in extremely backward regions of the country, have seen women become active participants. My presentation seeks to examine how these projects work, their funding models and the most eminent stories filed to date besides profiles of the most active women reporters.

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CGNET Swara

This is no ordinary news channel focusing on broadcasting news and information to people. It ensures that the audience is one that will understand what being tribal, unwanted and displaced is all about. Working on a simple premise that content is most effective when produced by those who are its most immediate audience; its coverage ensures that it’s more than just working along the principles of being media for and by the people.

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For Bhan Sahu, CGNET’s most active and earliest contributor, being a woman has certain undeniable advantages. She has done many stories for the site but she is proudest of her expose on child labor employed in the tendu leaf collection that’s big industry in Chhattisgarh. Sahu’s story on the exploitation of child workers in the tendu leaf industry forced the administration and the National Commission on Child Rights to ensure the removal of children from that industry.

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Khabar Lahariya

This is a newspaper that has already had quite an impact. This women-run newspaper recently published a story on the pathetic state of health care in Chitrakoot. The local hospital was refusing to provide emergency medical care to women in the area. They weren’t able to immediately solve the problem but at least the story got attention. It was published. The fact that Khabar Lahariya gave the issue priority and makes reporting on women’s health care an important aspect of its news coverage makes the organization and its product very remarkable.

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Khabar Lahariya, with a staff of nearly 12 women reporters from the marginalized Dalit, Kol and Muslim communities, is a unique media outlet. Written in the Bundeli language, it functions as a weekly that has news of politics and topics popular among the local people with a special emphasis on its female reading public.

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WAVE (Women Aloud: Video Blogging for Empowerment)

This was designed to be a digital platform for young Indian women to voice their perspectives on issues that matter through video blogs. WAVE was a product of collaboration of ideas. They proposed a video blogging project to the Digital Media and Learning competition, sponsored by the MacArthur Foundation and HASTAC. Later they partnered with the Point of View organization that served as the NGO -partner for the actual administration of the WAVE Project.

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Many topics are keenly examined by the participants. Bhoomika works at the Centre for Governance and Accountability in Delhi and she uses her videos to explain how women can help in the movement to make government budgets sensitive to women's needs. A print journalist, Moushumi Basu, shot a video about people in a village attempting to murder a family accused of witchcraft. “It is one of the most powerful pieces of work I have done to date,” she says.

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Increasing access to new media technologies is enabling women from some of the most remote regions of the world to make international headlines, organize across borders, and obtain vital information.