Archive for February, 2005|Monthly archive page

Something…Guessing around??

Sorry guys…pretty late update this time around. Was busy in some management simulation game throughout the week (more on it later). Some of my friends complained that I was taking myself too seriously in the first three blogs…so I embarked to write on something little bit casual this time around. To start off with, three news bits which left me wondering…

1) Call it the ripple effect or the nipple effect, it seems that advertisers are wary of pumping money into the 39th SuperBowl games in the US (American football for the uninitiated). The reports say that this is as a result of the Janet Jackson’s Bare-all episode last year, courtesy Justin Timberlake…although they covered it up by creating a new English phrase: Wardrobe malfunction. I was actually thinking about the reason behind the advertisers move and I was shocked when I found the answer. Guess what it is?? Ethics… silly. The same US advertisers who pump money urging people to have more junk food and shorter and shorter clothes…it is ethical u see?? B.S.(More about advertising in the next blog).

2) Steve Jobs, I thought was an excellent entrepreneur with amazing technical ideas. But recently I found that he is also a management guru, specializing in marketing. How else can one explain his fantastic marketing idea of the iPod Shuffle which left competitors flabbergast in one of the latest tech shows in the US. Usually all the music players have a little screen to tell u which song is playing and which songs are in the pipeline. However, iPod Shuffle doesn’t have any and Steve Jobs marketed this as a Unique Selling Proposition of the product. Take off a feature of a product and call it a USP…his competitors think he is crazy, but the customers are buying the idea and the sales are zooming. Beat that for a marketing tactic.

3) Pfizer has recently declared that it wouldn’t supply AIDS medicine to Africa at subsidized rates. The reason they gave was that if they export the AIDS medicine to Africa, then the virus may mutate itself against the medicine and hence become even more dangerous, rendering future medicine ineffective. Therefore, they said in the Greater good of Humanity, they declined to offer their medicine to Africa…ethics and morality again, my dear.

Back to urs truly, I finally watched ‘Troy’, exactly eight months after I thought that I have to watch it. I hate giving movie reviews on my blog but briefly, the movie was very well shot although Helen could have been a lot more prettier….:-).

Coming to the last week’s management simulation game, it was called the Threshold Competitor. The whole class was divided into teams of 6 each. We had to sell plastic products and the game was computer simulated, encompassing almost all the facets of business. My team included Shravan, Harish, Aashish, Raghu and Pranav and the team’s name was ‘Khuss Unlimited’(Try to guess the meaning…). Needless to say that our team won…but in the process, my whole week got screwed up. But I am really happy that we won and the effort was worth it.

I admit that it is quite a long blog, but I just couldn’t resist the flow of thoughts. The next blog is on Advertising…coming up very shortly in a blog near u…J…bye.

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Nation and Nationalism….what’s wrong with you??

I wrote this article for one of the newspapers. I do not have any idea whether it is going to be published or not. Just read on…and rate my chances of this being published….anyway, u guys are lucky to read this before it is published…J

Today’s nationalism is not about a large entity called the ‘Nation’. Rather, it is nothing but a “pathological sense of inflammation”, a grievance about the real and imaginary wounds inflicted on people and a sense of not being able to choose one’s own destiny.

Otherwise, who could explain the uproar over the usage of the word ‘Sindh’ in our National anthem disputing whether such a word can be used hence. Even more shocking is the serious consideration the Supreme Court is giving to this issue when there are other very important matters to look into. The English sing “God Save the Queen”. Since this is not relevant to our times, will they think of changing it to say – “God Save Tony Blair”. The Singaporean National anthem is in the Malay language, which is not even one of the recognized languages of Singapore. Yet, do they raise an upheaval about it??

Another important issue is that of the match-fixing scandal, which we have brushed down the carpet but are never sure when it would raise its dirty hoods again. Dirty?? Did I say Dirty?? In a nation where corruption is touching a billion lives on a daily basis, where the majority of us are involved in some corrupt practice or other, why should we expect just those eleven cricketers to be honest? And why should it be front-page news for weeks when it is of no consequence to the lives of majority in our country? Why doesn’t the media talk about how the corrupt politicians are letting down a billion people every moment instead of igniting our passions about a few cricketers?

We live in times of guided missiles and misguided men. Caught between the prophets of imminent apocalypse and peddlers of optimism, we expend little effort towards self-criticism and consequently on a movement towards self-possession. Can we dream of a Nation which ingrains Gandhian philosophy for real and not as hogwash? A philosophy where the issue is not about trivial usage of words or money, but about ‘Nationalism’ in the true sense. ‘A man’s reach should exceed his grasp or what’s a heaven for’, said Rudyard Kipling. Let us so live life, that when we come to die…atleast we can have the glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel.

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