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Corporate-Press interrelationship in Nepal lacks professionalism: report Featured

Written by  Published in Corporate Friday, 28 February 2014 18:45

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Kathmandu, February 28, 2014 -- The status of interrelationship between the corporate sector and contemporary Nepalese press is below par in terms of professionalism, a recent research report revealed.

Conflicts of interests coupled with unprofessional conducts are most prevalent in the interrelationship between corporate sector and newspaper organisations in Nepal, the research report, ''Study on Corporate-Press Interrelationship in Nepal'', released on Friday highlighted.

According to the report, the significant proportion (80%) of financial journalists in Nepal is found to be compelled to write corporate news as per the guidance of the marketing department of their newspapers.

During the study period, almost two third (62.50%) of the corporate organisations, in some way, compensated the journalists for their contribution in publicity of some products or services.

The report found that overwhelming majority (85%) of the financial journalists in Nepal has their investment in the stock market. A significant proportion (29.41%) of such investor journalists admitted that they favoured the issues regarding the companies in which they possessed shares.

The 30% of the respondent journalists participated in the survey during the study has informed that their newspapers mostly obtained advertisements through unprofessional means.

A comprehensive report on ‘’Study on Corporate-Press Interrelationship in Nepal’’ was prepared in December 2013 by the media researcher Amrit Kharel under the supervision of Mr. Prabal Raj Pokhrel, Associate Professor of Central Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, Tribhuwan University.

''Following the study over the past one year period, the report was finalised to fulfil the principle objectives of analysing the prevailing status of corporate-press interrelationship in Nepal,'' said researcher Kharel.

''Editorial freedom in Nepalese press should remain intact as it is in quite vulnerable situation due to the interfering factors like profit orientation, advertising, reliance on the information provided by the businesses, corporate funding etc.,'' the report insisted.

The research study, conducted from January through December, 2013, was conducted in three parts: survey among the 120 respondents including public relations officers, financial journalists and the general consumers, a content analysis of five different Nepalese daily newspapers published within a month period (July 15 to August 14, 2013) and intensive interviews with the industry professionals.

Among other key findings:

•    Banking and financial intermediations, wholesale and retail trading and communication and technology ranked top three most communicative segments of the Nepalese corporate world.

•    Corporate items accounted for 30.67% of total business items published in the Nepalese press. In an average, Nepalese press published 14.17 corporate items out of 46.20 business items in each day of the composite week.

•    Capital market and investment remained as the most dominant topics of corporate items with one fifth of the total items (20.36%) related to such issues. Banking and finance secured the second place amongst the topics with 17.14% coverage of related corporate items by the Nepalese press.

•    The third, fourth and fifth main topics of the corporate contents in the Nepalese press included communication and technology (13.11%), wholesale and retail trading (12.30) and manufacturing (11.29%) respectively.

•    It is important to note that 86.69% of corporate items in Nepalese press had one or more sources. Corporate items with one source made up over one quarter (26.61%) of the total corporate items while 60.08% of the corporate items had at least two sources. 

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