On 27 January 2016, well-known Canadian news professional Mr. George Hoff visited the campus. Mr Hoff has been the producer of many hard-hitting investigative stories on the longest running long-format programme in the Americas, including one revealing Canadian tax scandals—a subject that is normally untouched for obvious backlog from “the system”. Mr. Hoff has covered, among many other landmark events, the Cuban missile crisis, and is considered an election expert in Canada. Currently, Mr. Hoff is a consultant tasked with setting up news production infrastructure for one of the largest Indian news conglomerates.
In his lecture, Mr. Hoff emphasized the importance of relevance and timeliness in news reporting, and with the examples of a documentary on 50 Years of JFK, which he produced, explained how longer-format news requires time, money and persistence. He said the interaction at ITMI was impressive, but expressed concern over the fact that Indian news media’s selective and largely one-sided coverage of international issues, and that longer-format news seems no longer the norm in India.
Documentary-style news production brings with the concerns of budget and sponsorship interest, but can provide the depth of content and rigour of treatment that the shorter version cannot.