Saturday, August 16, 2003

Business Standard .. Angrezi nahin, Hindi chalega:
NDTV Media’s Nayak, however, feels that a comparison between English and Hindi news channels is odious. “It’s like comparing apples with oranges. Do you ever compare HBO with Zee Cinema,” he asks.

Besides, he feels that language makes all the difference as the television market for the two languages are distinct. Unequal comparisons notwithstading, the question is: is there a market for English news channels in India?

TV Today’s Krishnan thinks so. “There’s a large English-speaking segment that is keen to update itself on world affairs,” he says.

However, media planners say that despite the tall claims made by broadcasting companies about the market size of English news viewers, the two new entrants have performed below expectations. They even point out the reasons for the poor show.

For starters, media independent Carat India’s chief executive officer Sulina Menon says, Hindi news channels offer high production quality which hasn’t allowed viewers to shift to English news.

“We notice that even high net worth individuals in the socio-economic category A watch these news channels,” says Menon. Besides, within Hindi, there are at least five channels to choose from, she adds.