MSM stands from Main Stream Media.
CEO of NDTV, Vikram Chandra tweets this in the morning -
On Big Fight this week -- the SIT report and what that means for Narendra Modi. Send in your comments!
And follows it up with -
Also, would any of you tweeple who consider Modi the greatest ever like to come to the studio to speak about him?
I ask him back -
But do you have the report? If not, what SIT report will you discuss? @vikramchandra Simple Question.
He replies back -
@ssudhirkumar the various versions of what the report apparently contains?? Come - fly to delhi today!
He asks me to fly to Delhi "today"!
I decline, saying this:
@vikramchandra thanks for the invite. I find the debate patterns on english TV very distracting. thanks, but no thanks!
And I thought that settled the issue. Some well meaning folks have advised to me saying this might be a good chance to put a point across, but since this is a format, against which I wrote a detailed blog just last week, I was not too much inclined.
Things changed by evening. At 4:06pm and 4:10 pm, Vikram Chandra asks me:
@ssudhirkumar Sudhir? Tell me? can you come to sudio in hyderabad if not in delhi? 5.30 pm today??
I was still not keen, plus less than 90 minutes to prepare for a debate is too short a time for me. He further taunts me asking:
@ssudhirkumar why do you need to "think and prepare" on the SIT and Narendra Modi? I thought you normally have LOTS to say??
The taunting continued after I said that I do have lots to say, but need to organize thoughts coherently to speak in 1-2 minutes:
@ssudhirkumar so normally your thoughts are NOT coherently organized? Disappointed. Will miss you.
Again some well meaning folks advised it would be a good idea to put a point across, and even I thought that if this opportunity is let go, the taunting of "we gave you an opportunity, you didn't utilise it" will continue. So despite my strong thoughts on the format of the debate, I agreed to part of the debate.
But since the notice was too short, I couldn't make it to the studio. I am in office, and was willing to be connected through skype etc.
Here, Vikram Chandra insisted that I have to come to studio. I told him that I am at work and cannot possibly make it to the studio. But he insisted.
@ssudhirkumar has to be studio! how can i do it on the phone? someone will give you the address
And so I let go. However, he continues:
@ssudhirkumar btw, you have put out 57 tweets in the last 3 hours! While at work! Surely you could have found time for the debate?!
I did not expect that he will resort to such cheap shots. I was ready to debate, but not from the studio given the short time. I was willing to participate, but NDTV did not have the technical know-how of organising one other than their studio - how on earth was it my fault? I was told to fly to Delhi in the morning, and in the evening to drive to a studio?
Upon hindsight - the debate had the following participants:
@ssudhirkumar format is big fight.. you have to come to studio.. panellists are manish, nirmala, sanjiv bhatt, teesta, ashok malik etc
Maybe it is a good thing, I couldn't get onto the debate :D
On a more serious note, some folks have accused me of chickening out, running away etc. I do not get the logic at all ! Twitter interactions are as direct as they get - why is participating in a TV debate the sole barrier of "daring"ness?
We never shied away from any debate, only that we wanted a meaningful format for it. Despite strong thoughts, I did intend to participate given the fact that we live with what we have! Such short time to discuss modalities, and yet somehow I am at fault?
Anyways, I asked Vikram Chandra to organise a debate on media and told him I will fly down to Delhi then!
Also, he asked some other folks also to join in - but insisted that it had to be in the studio... so this discussion is not exclusive to me alone! Somehow though, he did find the time to count my tweets!