Media Matters: Culpable Homicide edition

Briefly: In January, conservative website The Daily Caller published a video of people being run over by cars. Mike Raust, whose byline went with the video, said in the accompanying text:

Here’s a compilation of liberal protesters getting pushed out of the way by cars and trucks. Study the technique; it may prove useful in the next four years.

Fox Nation, the aggregator site of Fox News, then republished the video and caption, giving it greater amplification and traction.

Earlier this month, in the wake of Charlottesville where civil rights lawyer Heather Heyer was killed when a fascist deliberately ran over a group of protestors, Slate rediscovered that video clip, which continued to reside on both Daily Caller and Fox, and called those outlets out.

The Daily Caller and Fox have since taken the clip down. Not because they thought at the time that the clip was inappropriate, that it was an incitement. Not because they were chastened by Charlottesville, where a murderer used the technique they had urged the right wing to “study”. But because they were caught out, called out in public.

Keep this in mind, the next time you hear intemperate TV anchors demonize some person or group. There are dangerously unstable people out there who will take their cues from these rants. And someone will die. And the journalist, the anchor, the website will have killed that person, as surely as if they were at the wheel of that car, or held the knife, or wielded the sword or gun or rope.

(As I’ve said before, I will between instalments of the Media Matters deep dive use this blog as a scratch-pad to collect incidents, thoughts that I can connect up later in the series. This is one such.)


BCCI: the Man Piaba edition

A few news items caught my eye in sequence.

#1. The BCCI will issue another notice (because he blithely ignored the earlier one) to its GM (Operations) MV Sridhar, in matters relating to conflict of interest and possible corruption.

#2. Javagal Srinath to inspect new cricket venues for suitability — his fact-finding trips to be planned by MV Sridhar.

Huh? I’d imagine that if I was employed by a company and it had reason to question me about acts of malfeasance, the first thing that would happen is I would be blocked from playing a role in daily operations. No?

Meanwhile: the Committee of Administrators in a submission to the Supreme Court spoke among other things about the huge expenses being run up by senior board officials. The board’s response? ‘I am not expensive. You are expensive. Nyaaah!’

Elsewhere, the Supreme Court has issued show cause notices to the head honchos of the board, for deliberately flouting their orders.

It’s looking like one of those farcical scenes in old time Westerns, where everyone is holding a gun to everyone else’s head. And in the background, Harry Belafonte’s Man Piaba plays on, softly.

It was clear as mud but it covered the ground
And the confusion made the brain go ’round.

PostScript: In my most recent Scroll column, I had made a tangential point about women’s cricket:

Recent media reports talk of the money officials of the rump BCCI have been spending on themselves. Which reminds me of a point made in an earlier column about women’s cricket. The last time our women cricketers had a contract – in fact, the only time they had a contract – the total annual outlay on 11 players was Rs 1.3 crore. Compare that to the amount of money being spent on acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary and treasurer Anirudh Choudhary.

A question: Have our women cricketers, whose contracts expired in November 2016, gotten their new contracts yet? No? Oh?

Seems a no-brainer, no? Contracts expire, you either renew, or cancel, and whichever it is, you inform the concerned people? How hard can that be to understand, and practice?

The reason the BCCI drags its feet on the question? This.

“Even now, I would still say that it is not yet well accepted within BCCI that women’s cricket is doing well. It is very difficult for them (some BCCI members) to accept the fact that this team has done very well,” said (Diana) Edulji.

Recalling her first meeting with former BCCI president N Srinivasan after he took over the reins in 2011, she said, “When Mr Srinivasan became president, I would like to say that I went to congratulate him at the Wankhede Stadium. He said, ‘If I had my way, I wouldn’t let women’s cricket happen’. He hates women’s cricket.”