Times Of India - tendency of Aug 19

Times Of India

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The Times of India has been criticized for being the first to institutionalize the practice of paid news in India, where politicians, businessmen, corporations and celebrities can pay the newspaper and its journalists would carry the desired news for the payer. The newspaper offers prominence with which the paid news is placed and the page on which it is displayed based on the amount of the payment. According to this practice, a payment plan assures a news feature and ensures positive coverage to the payer. In 2005, The Times of India began the practice of "private treaties", also called as "brand capital", where new companies, individuals or movies seeking mass coverage and public relations, major brands and organizations were offered sustained positive coverage and plugs in its news columns in exchange for shares or other forms of financial obligations to Bennett, Coleman & Company, Ltd. (B. C. C. L. ) – the owners of The Times of India. The B. C. C. L. , with its "private treaties" program, acquired stakes in 350 companies and generated 15% of its revenues by 2012, according to a critical article in The New Yorker. The "paid news" and "private treaties" practice started by The Times of India has since been adopted by The Hindustan Times group, the India Today group, the Outlook group, and other major media groups in India including Indian television channels.