By Malay Desai
In the run up to the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, India’s principal opposition party has released a series of 30-something second ad films showing citizens from all professions chatting informally. Tackling issues such as inflation, water, corruption and education, all ads wind up with the jingle ‘Acche din aane wale hain” (Better days are up ahead). Diversely, the incumbent Congress Party’s ad films put young party workers up front and talking about the need of a young, secular, inclusive government. Both parties’ films end with images of leaders Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi respectively.
Do we like
We are back after a month of fishing and it seems we’ve jumped right into a pan of fire. Things were simmering last month but in the midst of elections, the ‘battered champion versus aggressive challenger’ bout is at its dirtiest. When you ink your finger this time, chances are that your choice of PM would not be influenced by these campaigns, but advertising as we all know is a relentless beast and it never ceases to try.
Nearly a decade after having been in the rulers’ seat and running the ‘India Shining’ campaign only to fall flat on its face later, the BJP this time has kept things simpler – in terms of only promising a better tomorrow. The ‘acche din aane wale hai’ campaign is only a segment of its reported Rs 400crore budget, and the party is selling a beginning-of-time idea that’s been the lifeline of astrologers, bankers and other vice of society.
The films talk to the tonga-wallahs and farmers and have cleverly designed edges of crassness to them. By showing ‘conversations’, the party is trying to flaunt a grip on the nation’s pulse and by tapping on fundamentals, they lay their priorities bare. The punch lies toward the end though, with a clear message saying Modi would be the one-person solution to all things evil in our world. For a frustrated, burgeoning middleclass which tends to believe that an outside force will set things right (as opposed to diagnosing its own malaise), this works perfectly.
The Congress ads, having begun their run much earlier, are more sophisticated in treatment. Picking a young face to talk, they tell a story from a real location. The spots talk of inclusion, young vigour, evils of division and even take a dig at Modi without naming him. Show them to a foreigner with no political background whatsoever and they’ll floor him. Unfortunately for us, they have irony written all over.
Choose wisely, perhaps the best choice might be for the man who doesn’t have a film featuring himself!
To watch BJP’s tirade, feed this easy-link into your browser: goo.gl/Yh0f7Kor
BJP’s efforts on Whatsapp, Vine
Nope, not talking of the opposition’s universe of trolls here, nor the inane forwards dotting our Whatsapp feeds from the past few months. But in this first Indian election to be fought on social media (assuming Twitter wasn’t as big in 2009 and Whatsapp didn’t even exist), the BJP among other parties has cleverly used the social messaging app on smartphones. There is a ‘mission 272’ that’s pronouncedly there on all socia l pages and sending one’s name and pin code apparently enrolls you as a supporter. Meanwhile, from the past few days, the @ BJP4India handle has been auto-tweeting to anyone mentioning their Dear Leader or party with a shoddily cut Vine video of NaMo asking for votes. Plus one and minus one there, opposition party.
Rajnathjee likes this
YouTube sketches the new anti-propagators
If there is one aspect of the campaigning that’s flowing with creativity, vibrancy and a delicious amount of cheekiness, it’s YouTube. Sketches, or short films meant to evoke humour through sarcasm and other tools are quite the trend this year, and it’s really tough to escape one going viral. The top firms taking this business seriously are The Viral Fever, a Mumbai-based start-up with a 15 member team (check out their hilarious take on Aam Aadmi Party v/s Arnab) and All India Bakchod, a gang of comics hitting social headlines through explicit, but nail-meets-head content full of wit. The latter’s ‘funeral of the Congress Party’ video is particularly bold and funny , while their mentor Vir Das too has launched a cheeky song about all three PM candidates called ‘Say nah India’. Look up!
Arvind Kejriwal likes this
IPL streams on Star Sports – but will you still pirate?
In the vote war, we haven’t forgotten about the annual event no real cricket fan cares about, the Indian Premier League. If you don’t know it already, Star India has bagged internet streaming rights from Times Internet and is broadcasting every game. But with the absence of ‘LivePro’, i.e. the rights to show ‘live’ streaming, viewers are getting a five-minute delayed feed of the action. So for those who want absolutely live streaming and are even willing to pay for it, it seems that pirated sites are the only option. That said, we suggest you stick to the legal way of watching the paisa league on the feature loaded site or better, plan a Sharjah holiday to watch it the best way.
Paki streaming site likes this