ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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INDIAN LANGUAGES NEWSPAPERS 9-Oriya Identifying... with Newspapers

INDIAN LANGUAGES NEWSPAPERS: 9 Oriya: 'Identifying... with Newspapers' Robin Jeffrey The growth of Oriya newspapers after the late 1980s has been spectacular Does the willingness to pay for local information in the form of newspapers indicate the growth of a 'genuine public sphere' of which more and more Oriya-speakers see themselves as part? [Spreading across India after the end of the 'emergency' in 1977, technological change in the form of the personal computer and offset press revolutionised the newspaper industry. The circulation of daily newspapers in all languages trebled between 1976 and 1992 -from 9.3 million to 28.1 million and the dailies-per-thousand people ratio doubled -from 15 daily newspapers per 1,000 people to 32 per l,000. Regular reading of something called "news" both indicates and causes change. Expansion of competing newspapers clearly signals the vitality and growth of capitalism: newspapers have owners and owners must have advertisers. The changes of the past 20 years are obvious yet largely unstudied. The essays in this series on the press in the major Indian languages are part of a larger project to map, analyse and try to understand the transformation of the Indian language newspaper industry.] WE learn a lot from what once was the least developed newspaper industry in a major Indian language. Oriya did not get hot-metal typecasting (from the Linotype company) until the mid-1970s, 40 years after it had been introduced for Bengali and by which time the technology was obsolete.' The Oriya press, the Press and Advertisers' Year Book told readers in 1965, was "inhibited by illiteracy, lack of proper communications and industrial backwardness".2 Circulation of Oriya dailies in 1961 was 60,000, the lowest of 12 major languages, trailing Punjabi/Gurmukhi by 9,000.3 With a population of more than 17 million, the ratio of three dailies per 1,000 people was the lowest in India for a major language.

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