The Times of India and Ethics*



Case Code : CLSDM043
Publication date : 2005
Subject : Sales and Distribution
Industry : Media and Entertainment
Length : 04 Pages
Price : Rs. 100

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Key words:

Times of India, Bennett, Coleman & Co, Selling, News Space, Medianet, Edvertorial, City Supplements, Calcutta Times, Bombay Times, McDonald's, Paid Content, Reprinting, Zee-Bhaskar, Online Edition


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The caselet focuses on the allegedly unethical practices followed by the Indian English daily, The Times of India. It discusses specific instances where the online edition of the newspaper is said to have deviated from the accepted norms in news publishing and the impact of such practices on the public. It also describes the paper's response to a media critic whose website criticized the newspaper's practices. Finally, it puts forth views of journalists and other freelance writers on the issue.


Ethics of selling editorial space by newspapers


According to the Registrar of Newspapers for India , as on March 30, 2003, there were 55,780 registered newspapers in India with a daily circulation of more than 142 million copies. Out of these, 8,141 were registered English periodicals and newspapers. The newspaper industry was growing at a pace of 23%. Newspapers have always been considered as a reliable source in disseminating information, upholding the highest ethical standards in their reporting of the news.

However, there have been allegations that The Times of India (TOI), a newspaper of the Times Group owned by Bennett, Coleman & Co., had failed to maintain these high standards of conduct on several occasions...

Questions for Discussion:

1. The Times of India was accused of selling space to private parties to make money. Do you think the newspaper's act was unethical? Justify.

2. Newspapers and ethics should go hand in hand, but The Times of India was accused of violating the ethical code of conduct on several occasions. Discuss the various situations where the newspaper was alleged to have behaved unethically.