Journalism Week 1 – Media Autobiography – Karan Abrol (Kabrol)

 

I grew up in Bangalore, India and my relationship with media developed in a bit of a bubble. My parents brought me here from the US and I studied in international schools identifying with the norms of the West. I grappled with academics and tough teachers in a city trapped in a war between traditional and progressive agendas.

I started reading at an early age. I remember adults and teenagers staring at nine year old me when I camped outside a bookstore waiting for the release of the seventh Harry Potter book. When I was 12, my mother confused ‘adult level reading’ with ‘adult content’ and after some unnecessary emotional scarring, I started choosing my own material. Fiction has always appealed to me because of the intimacy between reader and author,- we share the writer’s emotions and feelings, we experience the story as individuals AND as part of an exclusive community created by the author.

I spent my childhood in a gated community. At eight, my two friends and I started a local newsletter- we convinced younger children (six and seven year olds) to write articles on things that interested them- movie reviews and cricket matches- and sold them to our neighbours for 2 dollars. I was ‘editor in chief’- I did monthly forewords and layouts. I aspired to be a journalist- my aunt, an editor at Reuters, is one of my idols. Journalists have as much power as they do responsibility. We have the ability to touch millions, and it is our duty to educate and inform them about the world to the best of our capabilities.

I read The Economist and Rolling Stone magazine regularly- I’m interested in politics and passionate about music. I devour vinyls, recordings, bootlegged performance tapes and rock radio stations. I listen to music for the same reason I read novels- the story and emotions they convey are overwhelming, and the experience is nothing short of intoxicating for me.

My first interaction with the internet was in connection to my newsletter. I haven’t watched TV since I turned 14, but all TV content I was interested in became available over the internet, as well as my entire social life during high school, and my interest in other forms of media- newspapers, news channels and live music shows were satisfied through YouTube and other websites.

My dedication to media matches my love for its consumption.

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