04 September 2007

Sagarmatha Television: "Get Me a Murder a Day"

By Harsha Man Maharjan

Live ‘exclusive’ of Sagarmatha Television on the occasion of serial bomb blasts in three palaces of Kathmandu on 02 August 2007 reminded me of the title of Kevin William’s book Get Me Murder a Day.
This book presents history of mass communication in Britain.“Get Me a Murder a Day: the Northcliffe Revolution and the Rise of the Popular Press” is the title of its chapter 3. This chapter tells how sensational newspaper and magazine started in late 19th century and early 20th century in Britain.

Like print media in Britain at that time, Sagarmatha TV presented the bomb blast incident in sensational way. It showed raw footage of blast at Tripureshow that was captured just few minutes after the blast. That footage was terrifying. People were thrown here and there. There was a charred (?) person who seemed to be killed at the spot. Sagarmatha TV telecasted this unedited footage naming it a rare footage which only the TV channel had.

This is the first incident that Sagarmatha got to telecast live. Till 1 August 2007, it lacked materials and was reading newpapers’ articles to cover its time. So the tv channel took these incidents as a golden opportunity to show its talent. It gave not a fig that these kinds of gory footage can terrorize people.

Other Nepali FM and tv channels were informing people that bomb blasting took place at three places. But Sagarmatha was repeatedly saying people that blasting took place in four places. Till 8’o clock, Sagarmatha was informing same information. It only terrified people in the name of informing them about the blasts.

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