28 Nov 2014. It was a well-deserved high-class finale to the third MediaCon of the Department of Communication, St Joseph’s College Bangalore. (that is the two-day National Media Conference)
The preparations for MediaCon began in June. Amidst many other pressing academic demands (probably more than anyone could expect or imagine for this year!) the students ensured they did a little by little for this their swansong.
Department of Communication at St Joseph’s College Autonomous, Bangalore, is a big family: The two-year M.S. Communication (PG), three-year Bachelor of Visual Communication (BVC), the two Bachelor of Vocation or B.Voc. programmes in i) Digital Arts and Animation [B.Voc.(DMA)] and Visual Media and Film Making [B.Voc. (VMF)].
While BVC had its Allura fest in early September, B.Voc had their International CIME Workshop on 19 September; M.S.Comm conducts its all-important national conference in November. MediaCon is a paper presentation seminar by research scholars, media teachers, media practitioners, and students from across the country; hence it is tougher than anything else to organise. A real challenge in every way – from finances to getting paper abstracts and papers to participants. And our students did it in style! That credit will always be theirs!
Swansong! Yes, usually the M.S.Comm-II students take the initiative. They did it really well. And their juniors supported them quite well, especially on the penultimate day of preparations, the contagious enthusiasm was palpable everywhere in the campus. And when 27 November dawned, everything seemed to have fallen in place! In spite of the small little anxieties – everything of which was sorted out backdoors, without letting anything affect the conference! And that was another plus!
Mr Sugata Srinivasaraju, editor in chief, Vijaya Karnataka, our chief guest set the ball rolling with his very insightful, insider ideas from editorial & newsroom. Sevanti Ninan, Editor, thehoot.org, delivered key note address elaborating challenges to media posed by digitisation. A few days ago, she had also updated her research reports (in collaboration with Ford Foundation) of digitisation in our villages and its implications.
And then four sessions of research papers by scholars followed on 27/11 and four more on 28/11. It was such a joy to listen to the moderators: my dear professor Leela Rao, another of well-known and much admired cultural critics Prof. Manu Chakravarthy, my professor Prof. N.S. Ashok Kumar, another of mine & SJC’s favourite Prof. Amjed Ahmed, SJC students’ cynosure High Court Advocate Mr Byatha N. Jagadeesha, Ms Juliana Lazarus (HOD, MCC), Ms Naureen Aziz (HOD, JNC), and Dr Chengappa (Christ)!
Shri Pradyot deb Barman was phenomenal. Young man. But live wire! And his ideas! He kept the audience on the edge of their seats with his humourous, insightful, solid, and lively interaction! And above all very practical. After the valedictory, we had a very informal chat with him – a few of my students (some for an interview for their practical journal Communique), faculty, and yours truly. As he kept munching his snacks and sipping his coffee, he also kept on chatting with us. That was really brilliant. An uninhabited, frank and honest gentleman! From media to politics, from Modi to Rahul and Kejriwal to everyone else! Honestly, I have never heard such an honest interview/chat from a political and media leader!
All in all -to keep it really short- it was brilliantly planned, worked for (‘labour of love’), and executed event – MediaCon-2014. Safar ka phal meeta hota hai! Bilkul!
Above all, it brings people together!
Well done, my dear students; I am really proud of you.
And, my valued colleagues, it always feels nice to be your colleague!
How I wish I could summarise the talks given by Mr Sugata Srinivasaraju, Ms Sevanti Ninan, and Mr Pradyot Deb Barman! Especially his informal, from-the-heart informal chat with us! And also Prof. Manu Chakravarthy’s moderator’s comments!