The Wire (Indian web publication)

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The Wire
Wirelogo.png
Type of site
Journalism, News, Analysis
Available in English, Hindi, Urdu
Headquarters First Floor, 13, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Marg, Gole Market, New Delhi, Delhi 110001, India
Owner Foundation for Independent Journalism (FIJ)
Editor Siddharth Varadarajan, etc.
Website https://thewire.in/
Alexa rank Increase 1434 [1] (India, August 2017)
Commercial No
Launched May 11, 2015; 2 years ago

The Wire (thewire.in) is a news website published by the Foundation for Independent Journalism (FIJ), a non-profit Indian company.[2][3] It was founded in 2015 by editors Siddharth Varadarajan, Sidharth Bhatia, and MK Venu,[4] who initially funded the site also.[3] The Independent and Public Spirited Media Foundation (IPSMF) has provided The Wire with funding as well,[3][5] and at least some of the website’s articles have been written pro-bono.[6]

The Wire’s coverage principally focuses on the topics of “politics, foreign policy, political economy, science and development”, according to an article published on Livemint.com.[6] Founding editor Varadarajan claims that the publication was created as a “platform for independent journalism”,[6] and that its non-corporate structure and funding sources aim to free it from the “commercial and political pressures” that supposedly afflict mainstream Indian news outlets.[6][7]

Context, reception and criticism

A story published in the Columbia Journalism Review (CJR) in late 2016 identified The Wire as one of several independent and recently founded internet-based media platforms - a group that also included Scroll.in, The News Minute, TheQuint.com and ScoopWhoop - that were attempting to challenge the dominance of India’s traditional print and television news companies and their online offshoots.[7] The CJR article details the removal of several prominent editors and journalists from their positions at mainstream Indian publications in the wake of the 2014 election of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. One of the “legacy refugees” mentioned is Varadarajan, who was removed from his position as editor at The Hindu: thus The Wire’s founding is construed as a result of, and reaction to, a political environment that has discouraged dissent against the ruling party.[7]

Indian Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and venture capitalist Rajeev Chandrasekhar accused The Wire of conspiring against him with the country’s main opposition, the Congress Party, after the website published two articles suggesting that Chandrasekhar's major investments in the Indian media and defense industries might represent conflicts of interest with his role as a legislator.[8][9] Chandrasekhar subsequently filed suit in a Banglore civil court, alleging that The Wire’s coverage of him was defamatory.[8] On March 2, 2017 the court passed an ex-parte injunction, ordering The Wire to block access to the two allegedly defamatory articles: Arnab's Republic, Modi's Ideology by Sandeep Bushan and In Whose Interests Do Our Soldiers March? by Sachin Rao.[8][9] Though The Wire removed both articles from its site, it has decided to challenge the court order.[8][9]

References

  1. ^ "thewire.in Site Info". Alexa Internet. 
  2. ^ Staff, The Wire. "How The Wire is Funded - The Wire". thewire.in. Retrieved 2017-07-04. 
  3. ^ a b c Kohli-Khandekar, Vanita (2015-11-02). "Online portals seek a new face of journalism". Business Standard India. Retrieved 2017-07-04. 
  4. ^ "About Us - The Wire". thewire.in. Retrieved 2017-07-04. 
  5. ^ "IPSMF | The Independent and Public-Spirited (IPS) Media Foundation". ipsmf.org. Retrieved 2017-07-05. 
  6. ^ a b c d Choudhary, Vidhi (2015-05-08). "Former editor of ‘The Hindu’ to launch news website". http://www.livemint.com/. Retrieved 2017-07-05.  External link in |work= (help)
  7. ^ a b c "Can the digital revolution save Indian journalism?". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2017-07-05. 
  8. ^ a b c d "Rajeev Chandrasekhar Says He's Fighting A Congress-Media Conspiracy". Huffington Post India. Retrieved 2017-07-05. 
  9. ^ a b c Staff, Scroll. "In highly unusual move, Bengaluru court orders The Wire to remove articles on Rajeev Chandrasekhar". Scroll.in. Retrieved 2017-07-05. 
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