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Lasha Kavtaradze

Professionalism in Georgian Way

21.05.2012 11:52
Give me money (photo: )

Few days ago the Organization to Support Freedom of Press once again reminded us of the lack of professional staff in print media. “Why using the word “print” media? Let’s directly say Georgian media lacks professional staff. Is it news to anyone? The press conference organized by the Organization once again unveiled the incorrect approach “the patrons  of Georgian media” apply trying to analyze the situation – journalists are the ones to blame.

Let’s first say a few words about the Organization to Support Freedom of Press – the organization funded by a political force (Bidzina Ivanishvili’s foundation Kartu) and founded by the Georgian Press Association. The latter on its own was founded few years ago by the publishers of Georgian newspapers including Kviris Palitra, Rezonansi and Asaval-Dasavali.

It’s rather interesting, for instance, the Asaval-Dasavali urging you for professionalism. Or you expect the journalist, being paid GEL 7-10 per article, to be a professional able to write the material corresponding to the New York Times and the Guardian standards. Media owners, much more similar to slave-drivers, preach professionalism while non-professionalism is flourishing, blooming and maturing in their newspapers.

It also paradoxical that in the organization funded by a political force “independent” media outlets get together. I don’t expect anyone to be so naïve to believe in apolitical benefits of political money.

Under the circumstances, of course, it’s the easiest way out to blame everything on ordinary reporters. Unlike licensed media the authorities are not harshly meddling into the editorial policy and content quality of most of the newspapers. Nevertheless the majority of newspapers cab be useful for the village toilets only. There should be somebody found guilty in this situation. Media owners cannot blame themselves, therefore they blame journalists.

The editorial office, says Maya Purtseladze, publisher of the newspaper Versia has got to teach novice reporters whatever the future journalists were to learn at universities. The weakness of journalism schools is another issue to write on but it’s absolute naivety of newspaper publishers expecting bachelor's degree holder Woodwards and Bernsteins applying for work at the Versia, Alia, Rezonansi or Kviris Palitra. I don’t think it’s new to anyone that journalists grow best professionally through work and media outlets are the ones responsible for this work.

Trusting Purtseladze they conduct trainings for interns for three months, and where to the trained ones go to? Why can’t we see media product produced in a highly professional manner? Maybe teachers are not good enough?

Let alone everything, while closely watching the dusk of print media outlets under the this organization yet fail to realize the importance of online space. Visit the websites of the Rezonansi, Versia, Asaval-Dasavali, one can seldom find cybermyopia of the kind in the whole online space. It’s also embarrassing that Palitra Media, like an immature boy, is trying to get self-satisfaction through watching women with big tits and naked top models. (I intentionally say nothing about hypertrophic creation such as Presa.ge, droni.ge – they can be no longer considered as media outlets). 

Under the circumstances a media owner speaking of Georgian journalists’ ineligibility is an attempt to cover own disability, to say the least. How can journalists’ corps create worthy product when more or less independent media outlets are at the crossroads of Stone and Copper Ages?

Even with hundreds of organizations, associations and societies founded and thousands of contests held does anyone think that anything is going to get better until media owners make themselves grow? Does anyone believe that we can see Hunter Thompson in Georgian media for the salary of GEL 300?

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