Wrong Status

Disclaimer: ''Media'' does not englobe the whole Media Spectrum.
This article has been written with the contribution of several parties. It has also purposefully been written in the first person although it represents the voices of some.

I hate how the media is speculating about things. I hate how they presented the wrong facts. I hate how people instantaneously conjured up possible theories they believed could have been the cause of the incident. I hate how people simply condemn those who commit suicide. And I hate it even worse when my parents tell me I can't change any of these.
I'm a teenager and I go to the Queen Elizabeth College. 
Great, I must have caught your attention by now. Why not? After all, unless you have a personal grudge against the QEC, you sure look up to this institution. I'm sorry for not putting it as an "all-girls star college". I had rather qualify it as its motto goes: "Not only for education, but also for life."
Does this motto suddenly sound ironic, after the loss of two of our sisters this year? This I know not. Neither am I here today to defend anyone nor to try shut down people who believe our school should take the blame.

What I'm here today for,is to fight for the dignity of my belated friend. Friend, victim or however you had named her. She remains for me a sweet soul, always and forever.
Yes, for her dignity. And I'll tell you why.
Let me first relate to you a little segment of our daily interactions on the school bus. I remember some 3 or 4 months from now, a woman in - 'to play it safe'- her 65s living in the southern part of the island had been raped. 

‘To play it safe’: because I honestly had no idea what the real age of that lady was. While one radio claimed she was 65, another read out 68. And that was exactly what a friend of mine was unable to understand. How come that the different media themselves had no agreed consensus on the precise, accurate fact they were meant to present? The last time I checked, I do remember the media having the responsibility to present news in the utmost objective, accurate way. 
Now, it may appear childish to argue on such a point. Who gives a damn about the age of a victim?
But I’ll tell you what; it is these little loopholes that ultimately culminate into something more dramatic, into something that may cost all of us a price 10 years from now.
The media is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. They control the minds of the masses.
Because today we live in a society in which spurious realities are manufactured by the media, by governments, by big corporations, by religious groups, political groups... So I ask, in my writing; what is real? Because unceasingly we are bombarded with pseudo-realities manufactured by very sophisticated people using very sophisticated electronic mechanisms. I do not distrust their motives; I distrust their power. They have a lot of it. And it is an astonishing power: that of creating whole universes, universes of the mind.
I am frantically not sorry. I am not going to wait for someone else to ring the bell.
That moment in the school bus with my friends, I felt it was high time we highlight blotched stains on the way information is presented, or the media would continue to live in their heavenly abyss of unquestionable 'opposition party' that the Mauritian populace has handed over it and aggravate the way they present their news.
I don't think that waited too long.
It happened.
With a grave cherry added on the top.
Read 58256 times on this late Wednesday afternoon and shared on Facebook 2253 times was this article that greatly disturbed me. ‘Disturbed’ would be a polite way to place it for I was more than outraged.
"La collégienne qui s’est suicidée : «It’s done. It’s finalized. I am ready to leave you guys»"
Written by www.defimedia.info this woefully DISTORTED news is still up today May 12 and was repeated during Radio Plus’ News Info in the morning.

The Real Status
Someone they interviewed must have said something about a status and couldn't get them the whole thing so they just took bits and parts of it. Oh but give me a second: Does not it dwell the duty of the reporter to confirm the factual data?
The media casually removed "There's no way on Earth" to twist the story and present a 180-degrees-rotated news to 1.2 million people. This is not even a mistake or shame for the Mauritian Media, it's a blunt stigma on their unprofessional-ism.
I can't bring myself to think how many thousands of Mauritians have read the wrong reporting and have made up their minds and invented their own sets of prejudices attributable to blind information consumerism.
People are sheep. Media, the shepherd.
What the mass media offers is not popular art, but entertainment which is intended to be consumed like food, forgotten, and subsequently replaced by a new dish.
Media have no rights to twist the facts; this is an utter disrespect to not only the young departed soul, to her family and close ones, but also to the Mauritian Population to whom they are answerable!
It's important to get the true thoughts forth.
In addition, it is very thoughtful of the media to always come with their bags loaded ethics and respect to human sensitivities and état d’esprits.
As per the Hindu tradition, before they carry the body off to the crematorium, family members should surround the body for praying purposes. There was one photographer who forced his way into the middle to take a picture of the mother crying with the face of the girl in the frame.
After some time, he was back with QEC girls (Shrivali's friends) to where her body rested and was asking them to stand by her and cry so that he could have another picture. He didn't stop until the body was carried away to be cremated.
Whatever kind of image the media was going for, well they missed it.
Furthermore, we all knew that the information industry is one that generate news à la minute. However, leave it to them this time to chronically live up to this tag and prove that hastiness and superficiality are the psychic diseases of the twentieth century.
The media, especially the commercial ones, are notorious for their sets of gate-keeping, sensationalism and constant race to shoot their TRPs up.
Amidst all this rush and competition, I find it unapologetic that someone has to remind them of their responsibility to cross-verify, double check their facts!
People today believe that it was all decided and planned since the 7th of May as the media so well quoted it. People interpreted that her immediate environment must have doubted things because of that wrong status but never paid attention. People must have thought that she wanted to leave us when she clearly was vibrant about never leaving us all.
Can you imagine the misinterpretations that thousands of people got by reading the wrong status? Do the media fathom the amount of harm this brings to the dignity of the family, friends and relatives?
Sure, I don’t have to continue and add that this distortion or news could follow legal pursuits against many media institutions.
This time Dearest Media, you messed up badly by moulding the perceptions of Mauritians in an absolutely unacceptable way.
And this is not the first time where the media has inflated bubbles, with uncritical bandwagon reporting played an indispensable role in creating destructive interpretations. If we have to make a report of things, it would be a whole sheet of records coming out.
This incident has merely given me the opportunity to speak out about something that has been terribly bugging me.
I’ll clarify that it is the place of none of us to judge anybody’s act of despair. It takes tremendous courage to reach that point and crystallize the dark thoughts that have been haunting one and jump into the void, kick the stool to be left hanging or slice the wrist artery open. And, to believe that solely failed alliances or pressures from parents to perform well at school are pathetic mind-sets of a society that can only dissect political shies away from encouraging the media to have prime time programmes on issues like homosexuality, blue-collar crimes, drug addiction, broken families inter alia.
I am not naïve. I understand that a vibrant press plays a crucial role in a healthy democracy; the media also have an indispensable watchdog role in business and economic affairs. At their best, journalists make sense of complex economic issues, dig into scandals that would otherwise go unseen, and shine light on government policies and their effects on jobs, consumers and taxpayers. Without smart and critical economic reporting, society would have far fewer defenses.
But the media has also been called upon to be fully objective, fair and accurate. And as a consumer of daily news, I demand my right to fair, CROSS-VERIFIED and accurate news.
This context may seem petty to some, but I find it a violation to my democratic rights to cohabit with this kind of media.
If you Dear Mauritian Media could have stood up to for your pen and shielded your ink’s free flow after the Charlie Hebdo's aftermath in your respective offices during that week of January, learn to stand up and protect your ink from being dirtied with filth oh dear media.
The people reading this should not be taking what they read in the papers as an alibi for their ignorance. And you Dear Media, from this instance have the duty to make your consumers AWARE of the REAL FACTS!
If you had the nerve to report false news, then have the decency to correct yourselves and publicly apologise.
"If I can guide some erring one to truth, inspire within his heart a sense of duty; if I can plant within my soul of rosy youth a sense of right, a love of truth and beauty; if I can teach one man that God and heaven are near, I shall not then have lived in vain while here."
Thank you Shrivali. You shall always be remembered. All the love in the world, God Bless.


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