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Raghav Bahl in the US to learn how tech-driven media companies run
MUMBAI: Network18 founders Raghav Bahl and Ritu Kapur, who had recently exited Network18 by selling their equity to Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), are on a digital news discovery expedition in the US.
Bahl had recently disclosed that he has plans to launch a digital news outlet. It is believed that his trusted lieutenants B Sai Kumar and Ajay Chacko, former Network18 Group CEO and COO, are also part of the new venture.
The husband-wife duo have been meeting professionals in Big Apple (New York) and Silicon Valley (San Francisco) to gain insights into how digital media is changing the media landscape. The former Network18 supremo plans to use some of those insights for his yet-to-be-launched digital news outlet. He is also believed to strike alliances with media outlets there.
“8 weeks of start-up nitty gritty, hunting offices & fresh talent, learning digital products—like early ’90s TV18!” Bahl tweeted from the US.
Bahl emphasised that tech-driven media companies are the giants of tomorrow.
“Learning from voyage across digital news in America-Original Content is thriving & at the core of successful innovations. Heartening!” read another tweet.
“Visited iconic design lab at Stanford. Stimulating discussion on future of news—expertly curated, aggregated, opinionated, hand-held!” went another tweet.
“Met guys producing news ONLY for a mobile app. Admire their single-minded conviction & keen to track their progress. Best wishes to them,” tweeted Bahl.
“Is it legal to curate/aggregate news from other sources? Some fuzziness in existing IP laws, but free speech principles shall prevail.”
He also said that more people are now discovering news via social sharing than any other link or click. “Would you like to get your news/info in a personalised, perennial, searchable & archivable Twitter like stream? It’s happening in Frisco!” he tweeted.
The founder of one of India’s leading television networks admitted that linear TV is a legacy medium just like linear newspapers.
He also said that the printing press of the 21st century is the publishing algorithm of a mobile news app. “A machine learns what you buy, listen and share—and then uses an algorithm to send you news that matters to you! Another Frisco nugget.”
He also had a word of advice for journalists who ignore technology, “Many old-world journalists make fun of an algorithmic targeting of news stories; they ignore powerful technology at their own peril!” Bahl said in his tweet.
“Met bright journalists who believe in the power of content but acknowledge that technology multiplies impact. That’s the future!”
Bahl is expected to recruit a battery of journalists and begin a new journey to start his digital news business, after selling his old television media empire to Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd.