Twenty first century is the century of media, which is used extensively to build narratives in order to shape public opinion for vested interests. Media is not only used as a political and state communication tool but is also extensively used by countries for exploiting faultiness within their adversaries. Media is a double edge tool which can play a constructive role however at the same time it can be a causative factor in negative propaganda leading to violent behavior.
No country, nation or group can restrict the role of modern media in current globalized world. This is primarily the reason that warfare landscape has changed, where other facets or tools have taken over lead while pushing hardcore military might to the back. Media has emerged as an important facet; powerful nations are trying to further their interest through the use of popular media and is investing billions in it accordingly.
Likewise, the developing countries are also catching up on the trend and is enhancing its capabilities in utilizing media to further their agenda. This has increased media significance manifolds and it has become a powerful tool to manage nation’s image and perception globally.
Pakistan is one of the country around the globe wherein media is vibrant and well established. It has a wide array of media channels, most of whom are owned by individuals who have no professional background. Owners often use their channels for personal or political gains. That’s why our media is involved in promoting antagonism and chaos rather than genuine awareness among masses. Here freedom of expression and journalism itself is being exploited and negative vibes seems to have dominated positive journalism and communication. The true essence of media and journalism is to keep general public aware of the information on offer, which is not the case here unfortunately. Every media organization and institution have its own agenda and are adamant to promote it in complete disregard to the facts. This is the reason that educated section of society is fed up from the news and current affairs shows on offer and are slowly disconnecting from mainstream media to social media. Which is a far more dangerous proposition considering that it is being regulated by the powerful nations who are using it specifically to promote their own interests.
Pakistan, its state institution and groups are facing adventurism and non-seriousness not only from its internal media but the negative propaganda of the international media as well. These media organization through an organized agenda do not miss any opportunity of marring Pakistan’s image. There is no doubt that like every nation, Pakistan has its own weaknesses whereas certain policies over the years has damaged its image exponentially. But history reveals that no nation is without challenges and almost every nation goes through such trials.
Pakistan is a resilient nation of around 220 million people wherein most are a vibrant youth who are trying their level best to put Pakistan back on track of long-lasting development. However, the positives of Pakistan are never highlighted as compared to the problems it is facing. This country is on road to developments and in the past one and half decade three democratic governments have completed its terms which has not been appreciated or highlighted by media as it should have been. Moreover, successful military operations have been carried out against terrorists and by the grace of Al Mighty Allah, currently, no area is under the control of non-state actors. Post operations, reconstruction and rehabilitation is in full swing and currently there are virtually no TDPs in the country. For the first time in the history, the long-awaited merger or mainstreaming of FATA has been successfully accomplished and now this area is part of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with its representatives elected in the provincial legislative assembly.
Considering the internal and external challenges in media domain, Pakistan needs to develop a well thought out coherent strategy. Current government has taken few steps in this regard, however, there is still a lot of room for improvement. it is also important that other than regulations, concerned sections of the society and media play a responsible role. Instead of disseminating negative propaganda, it should focus on real journalism by identifying ways and means of providing guidance to the people especially youth. At the same time, they should remain critical of the flaws within society but should avoid falling to vested agenda.