In an instance that came to be seen as symbolising the carelessness which often marks Doordarshan’s functioning, a picture with an unrelated caption posted by its Twitter account sparked derision through the day in the digital world. But in a sign of the seriousness with which DD has taken it, they have removed the executive responsible for the tweet from social media duties, and are planning immediate training and orientation for the medium.
A screen grab of the DD News tweet.
At 9.44am, @DDNewslive tweeed a picture of the BJP parliamentary board meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah, home minister Rajnath Singh and external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj in the shot. But, the caption read, “Jingle all the way!!!...A man dressed as Santa Claus feeds monkeys ahead of Christmas at a zoo in China.”
Mocking tweets were quick to come by. In an initial response, DD told followers that there had been an "error", and the story had been put out with the correct picture. It asked followers not to misinterpret the news. Around noon, it issued another clarification, “An unrelated picture was inadvertently placed by side of the China Zoo story. We have removed the tweet.”
Akshay Raut, DG news of DD, told HT that certain contractual staffers — called content executives — handled social media under a supervisor. The inadvertent conflation of the picture with the wrong caption was made by one such executive.
He said, “We have already removed the person from social media duties. I have asked a senior officer — of director rank — to investigate the issue more closely and see if there have been such errors in the past by the said person. We have also shifted the supervisor out of those duties for now.”
Raut added that he planned to hold a training and orientation programme very soon and institutionalise a mechanism so that social media outreach was "mistake-free and error-free".