Archive | June, 2012

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Uses And Misuses Of Cinema

Posted on 30 June 2012 by Milana Rao (Contributing Writer)

Cinema! The mere sound of this word excites and mesmerises many people. Cinema is one of the most powerful means of mass media. The impact of cinema on the minds of the people, irrespective of their age, is profound.

The history of cinema dates backs 1895, when the Lumiere brothers first invented the motion pictures. The invention of moving pictures left people spellbound. This development paved way for the birth of Indian Cinema in 1913.  Dhundiraj Govind Phalke produced the first Indian silent movie titled ‘Raja Harishchandra.’  Since then, Indian cinema has only grown and prospered.

Being such a popular medium, the impact that cinema has on the people is obvious and notable. The most important function of cinema is entertainment. But besides that, there are a number of functions that cinema performs.

For one it lets people believe that good triumphs over evil. Certain movies are made to make people aware of the evils that are prevalent in human customs and traditions. They also show how the culture and traditions followed by us have transformed from what they were in the ancient societies to what they currently are.

Watching movies of an era gone by makes us feel proud of our rich national heritage. The fact that we share a common history develops a feeling of belonging-ness and this helps in national integration.

There is an increase in the number of movies that deal with social issues and personal disabilities. Examples of these would be movies like ‘Black’, ‘Taare Zameen Par’, ‘Paa’, ‘Guzaarish’ and so on. It is movies like these that open our minds to situations and people that we otherwise overlook. This goes to show that cinema is a rather powerful tool of social influence. The government can use it to propagate its welfare programmes such as adult literacy, child education, hygiene etc.

But then every coin has two sides. In spite of the fact that cinema has many positives and that it is a boon to society in many ways, its negative aspects cannot be overlooked.

Today, cinema is too violent. Violence, atrocities on women/children and society, and sexually explicit content are shown under the pretext of ‘artistic expression’. This sends wrong signals to the young generation. The kind of language used in the movies is also not decent anymore. Swear words are becoming part and parcel of daily conversation in almost all movies. As a result of this, children and youngsters think it is cool to use swear words freely as and when they please.

Children and the young generation have impressionable minds. Especially in an age when cinema celebrities are considered next to God and are Hero worshiped, the fact that people readily following their favourite celebrity is not surprising. Anything done by the actors on screen is taken to be real and is in turn followed. This trend can take a hazardous turn when the actors (under the guise of a character) do or promote something which is either illegal or immoral.

Nonetheless, it largely falls on us to interpret cinema correctly. It is our choice to either see their positives or embrace the negatives. And hopefully, we will make a smart choice.

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KC BMM presents ‘Slubberdigulligan’

Posted on 29 June 2012 by BMMBoxer

After months of planning, KCBMM’S first ever bulletin – ‘Slubberdigulligan’ is here.
Do I see raised eyebrows on reading that word?
In that case, yes, you heard us right.
It’s not a newspaper or a magazine, but it is in fact a BULLETIN!

The first thing one is taught when they join BMM is to think ‘out of the box’ and we, the students of KCBMM seem to live by that. Hence, the name.
To start with, the word ‘Slubberdigulligan’ (pronounced: sluh-buh-di-guh-lee-gun) means absolutely nothing according to the dictionaries. But ask us, what it means and pat comes the reply ‘Making sense out of Nonsense’.

”Sometimes, even the wackiest ideas turn out to be better than the well thought ones, and we certainly hope this is the case with our bulletin,” Release head Krittika Nangalia says animatedly.
An effort by the SY students of KCBMM, Slubberdigulligan came to life with the sole intention of being not only a fun guide for the students but also having an informative side to it. From providing information on upcoming projects, telling you indispensable jokes, introducing you to the world of funny comic strips, and sharing photo albums, movie reviews and even gossip, this bulletin promises it all.
The Editorial Board is divided into 9 committees that include Creatives, Photography, PR, Release, Feedback, Design, Collection of Articles, Marketing and Language & Content. And, last but not the least, we have the Editor whose job is to make sure that every committee cooperates with each other and that the bulletin is all but a huge success.

So, why a Bulletin you ask? ”We wanted the BMM students to have their own identity and have something that would exclusively cater to them,” says Deep Chhabria, the Editor and Chief Creator + Ideator of Slubberdigulligan. Natalie Bansal, Creatives Head has a different take on this. According to her, ”What’s a BMM course that does not have its own mouthpiece?? And, that’s where this bulletin comes in the picture.”

Remember that cool person who has access to all the latest gossip in college and who is also the one you’ve always wanted to befriend? ‘Slubberdigulligan’ seeks to be THAT friend.

This bulletin is YOUR solution to finding out about what is happening not only in college but also around town! So, grab your copy soon!
Coming at colleges near you on the 30th of June, 2012.

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Tips on Editing An Article

Posted on 28 June 2012 by Karima Khan

This article is for all those who want to be writers as it aims to help you understand how you can edit an article and make it crisp and worth reading.
Here are some editing rules that you need to keep in mind:
Rule #1:
Collect all the information you need to write about the topic and jot it all down on paper.
Also, make sure you are in a silent environment. Ideally, it should be you, your paper, your pen and your head bursting with ideas.

Rule #2:

After you’re done brainstorming and writing down your initial ideas, align them in a particular order; the order being: Head, Body and Conclusion.
Every great article has a catchy beginning, a comprehensive middle and a satisfying conclusion. Your reader mustn’t feel that there was ‘something missing’ in the article.

Rule #3:
Now you must edit your article. Cut out all that you think is unimportant. Stay within the prescribed word limit. Make sure the content is crisp, to the point and relevant. Do not stray from the topic.

Rule #4:
Do not use short forms unless necessary. If you do use them, make sure you specify what the abbreviation stands for.
Example, IPL (Indian Premier League), APMC Market, Vashi (Agricultural Produce Market Committee)

Rule #5:
Don’t use short messaging service (SMS) language. Writing stuff like ‘Lyk, IDK!, LOL, FYI, DYN’ is unacceptable. Use of the words ‘like’, ‘I mean’, ‘etc’, ‘whatever’, ‘as if’ should be kept to a minimum.

Rule #6:
Learn the usage of Terminal Marks [ ! ? . ] and Secondary Bound Marks [ : ; , – ]

  1. An exclamation question like, ‘Harry! Are you alright?!’ will always have the use of ‘?’ followed by ‘!’ and not vice-versa. However, such usage is considered informal.
  2. ‘:’ is used to introduce a list of extract or quotation that follows an introductory sentence, or to denote hours and minutes, etc.
  3. ‘;’ is used to separate two independent thoughts in a sentence lessening the use of conjunctions.

Rule #7:
You can always fill make use of quotes and examples that will make your article interesting and keep your reader hooked.

Rule #8:
Re-read your article multiple times to ensure that you haven’t made any mistakes.

Rule #9:
For honing your writing skills, read newspapers, magazines and internet articles.
In fact, don’t just read but learn from them – the words they use, the flow of the story, the separation between paragraphs etc.

Rule #10:
Enjoy the process!

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Presentations Pointers

Posted on 26 June 2012 by Sean Andrade

All of us have experienced stage chills while giving crucial presentations in college. Even the most practiced speakers experience stage fright so it is not unnatural for a college student to experience discomfort and anxiety when presenting. Stage fright or nervousness before an important presentation is nothing to be ashamed of and you mustn’t allow it to come in the way of your presentation.

Your presentations skills are just as important as the information you are presenting. If you cannot grab the attention of your audience and hold it, then all the useful and relevant information you have accumulated won’t register with them. The audience doesn’t bother listening to a boring speaker, hence one must have the requisite presentation skills to keep the audience engaged. People are easily distracted with anything and everything so it is up to you to get them to listen to you if you so wish.

Remember these steps to keep your audience from dozing off:

Prepare well: It is important to prepare well for a presentation. Make sure you know your content and know what you are going to be talking about. The presentation should contain only useful and relevant information; don’t over-stuff your presentation with information. This will irritate your audience and they will not remember all you said.

Know your strength: You should analyse yourself and identify your strengths. Some people are able to keep the audience engaged by adding a touch of humour to their presentation. You have to evolve your personal style of presentation skills. Being unique and informative is always applauded by the audience.

Ignoring presentation anxiety: There are quite a few ways you can effectively suppress anxiety during your presentations. Drink sufficient water and wipe away the sweat. Don’t let anyone intimidate you and believe in yourself. Don’t disregard the stress, acknowledge its presence and use it as a tool to perform well.

Practise: You have to get a hang of what you are going to be talking about. Therefore, practise and continue to do so till you master your skill.

A few extra pointers: Always make eye contact with the audience. Remember to pause and change your tone and volume level depending on what information you are sharing with them. Ensure your presentation is interactive and build a conversation with the audience.

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Portrayal of Women in Ads

Posted on 24 June 2012 by Sharal Barboza

Of all the ads that you are exposed to daily, majority of them showcase women. The products (be it a deodorant for men, an apartment, a car or a home loan) in these ads do not necessarily cater to women, but then a woman is used to sell them. These ads create a specific image of women in order to market their product. However, the audience fails to understand that such ads try to manipulate the masses.  Usually, a mediocre company tries to sell its mediocre products by using a female model with a slim and sexy body, whose purpose is to attract attention. This way people remember the girl in the ad, the product she is endorsing and will purchase that product keeping the girl in mind, not the use and features of the product. In the case of products targeted at men, the use of females as sex objects is all the more because the presence of a woman is more than enough to catch the attention of men.  For example, all the axe body spray ads feature a string of good looking female models that pout and drool over the man using that particular deodorant. From a women’s perspective, this ad may not make sense but from a man’s point of view, the ad is simply awesome because it makes him believe that using this product will make him desirable to the ladies.

Consumer advertising projects an unrealistic image of women whose main features/qualities are being thin, having a fair unblemished complexion, and looking good. This significantly affects the way women think about themselves. Such ads suggest to women and girls that the only important thing about them is the way they look, causing many women to believe that their self-worth is dependent on the attention they receive from men which in turn depends on their looks. Like, the woman in the fairness cream ad who cannot get a job because she is dark skinned. Or the woman in the Clean and Dry Intimate Wash ad who feels her husband is not attracted to her because she isn’t fair ‘down under’. We know this to be highly exaggerated and downright false. But then these ads talk the language of the society and hence they work. This reinforcements of stereotypes works against the breaking of specific moulds in which women are carved.

A lot of ads portray women as sex objects. This is highly demeaning and degrading. An example of this is the GoDaddy.com ads. In most cases, the product has got nothing to do with sex or women, but still the tone of the ads is such so as to attract maximum attention.

Commoditisation of women as sex objects has a very detrimental effect on girls and women. The constant abuse of women’s sexuality to sell products in the beer, sports, film and music industries, for example, has completely distorted our understanding of sexuality and gender roles. “Sex sells” is one of the mantras of advertising.  Whether you want it or not, women are a huge part of today’s advertising business and the masses are totally besotted with ads that do have a female model in it.

As you see, a certain style of portrayal is what shapes perceptions of the society and the women who live in this society. One begets the other, and thus a vicious circle is set into motion. If we want to stop projecting women as sexual objects and commodities then we need to ensure they are not portrayed as such in advertisements. It follows, that ads which show women in a bad light must be banned so that society is not influenced by them.

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Ambush Marketing

Posted on 22 June 2012 by Devyani Savnal (Contributing Writer)

When I first heard the term ‘Ambush Marketing’ I was curious to know what it actually means. To put it harshly, it is but a marketing technique where big corporations cash in on some major event and/or trend without paying sponsorship fees.

You must be wondering but how is that possible? Let me elaborate with an example.

Ambush marketing was first witnessed in India during 1996 cricket world cup held in the Indian Sub-continent. Coca Cola was the official sponsor of the event and they paid INR 40 crores as sponsorship fees. Pepsi single-handedly countered their world cup campaign by releasing an ad campaign with the tagline ‘Nothing official about it’. This campaign by Pepsi caught the imagination of the audience and struck a chord with them. Pepsi also signed a string of cricketers for this campaign and as part of their contracts told them not to approach coke advertised trolleys during the drinks break. Thus, thanks to ambush marketing, Pepsi outshone the official sponsors and emerged the ‘official’ winner.

From there, ambush marketing just took off…

Pepsi paved the path and many more brands followed their example. The episode with Jet Airways, Kingfisher Airlines and Go Air is a remarkable example of Ambush Marketing.
The events transpired as follows:

  • Jet Airways put up a hoarding that read, “We have changed”,
  • Kingfisher Airlines countered that by adding a hoarding above which read, “We made them change”
  • Finally Go Air put a banner above these two which read, “We’ve not changed!”

This sure created for a comical scenario. Nonetheless, all brands managed to get their point across and register the same with the audience.

Another example of ambush marketing is what happened between Hindustan Unilever and Procter & Gamble (P&G). P&G launched an advertising campaign for the re-launch of Pantene with the tagline that read, ‘A mystery shampoo. Eighty percent women say it is better than anything else they’ve used.’

A few days after the release of this campaign and before P&G could unveil this ‘new’ shampoo, Hindustan Unilever ambushed the ad by placing an adjacent hoarding with the tagline ‘There is no mystery, Dove is the No. 1 shampoo’. Brilliant, eh?

Of late, India has witnessed a rise in the number of ambush marketing cases. It is to be seen everywhere now; be it on hoardings and banners or TVCs. Given its rise, one can ask whether ambush marketing is ethical or not. My personal opinion is that the question of ethics doesn’t arise. Ambush marketing is being practiced because of the fierce competition, and the need to have constant connect with the TG. For that, the companies are always in search for ways and means to outsmart their competitors. As long as no harm is done, ambush marketing makes for good entertainment for the audience and brownie points for the brand.

A final point I’d like to make here is that ambush marketing is good for the advertising industry. When done within legal boundaries it promotes clever advertising. (In India, there is almost no protection against indirect ambush marketing. However, for direct ambush marketing, there are several laws like The Trade Practices Act, the Trade Marks Act, The Copyright Act, The Counterfeit Goods Act and the Merchandise Marks Act.) It drives both agile and creative behaviour amongst marketers and also induces a fresh new buzz into the product category. Brands of shampoo don’t normally set our pulse racing, but the scuffle between Dove and Pantene certainly captured our mind space and imagination.

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7 Reasons Why You Must Discuss Concepts With Your Group

Posted on 20 June 2012 by Srirang Kavali

Several times while brainstorming over what should be the concept of a short film, we are hit with an idea which we think sounds great. In our excitement of having finally gotten ‘that’ perfect concept, we pen it down and begin to build the final storyline around it. After we are ready with our finalised product, we share it with our siblings or parents or friends. On doing so, two things happen, either it is appreciated or we are asked to fine-tune certain angles/twists. In such cases, the critical analysis of the concept seldom happens. After this casual discussion we think our concept is ready to be shot.

However, we must realise that concepts of a short film that we need to shoot for a project/fest need to be discussed with our work group. Discussing a concept with the group strengthens the potential of the concept and widens its scope. Following are the benefits of discussing a concept with the group.

  1. Different point of views: The first benefit that you get from group discussion is that you are surrounded by multiple point-of-views. Right after the concept is expressed, each group member assesses the concept in his unique way. These different P-O-Vs will only help strengthen the original idea and make it complete.
  2. Works as a test-sample: Discussing the concept is akin to testing it in a small part of the market. These people who are from different backgrounds and who hone different thought processes work as the perfect test sample.
  3. Suggestions always help: Meaningful and well-intentioned suggestions will help better the concept. They will also help get rid of the undesired and socially/politically ambiguous messages that can be the reason behind the breeding of hurtful sentiments.
  4. SWOT analysis: Group discussion helps you conduct the SWOT analysis of the concept. This way you get to know the benefit and flaws of the concept, its potential threats and what opportunities lay ahead. Generally, conceptual discussions involve: S for Strength: The USP of the message that is delivered through the concept, W for Weakness: What the concept lacks in, O for Opportunities: What can be explored / added, T for Threat: What must be eliminated / not used.
  5. Reduced bias: The shared responsibility of a group in arriving at decisions can encourage individuals to think using independent outlooks. Individual biases and prejudices can be challenged by the group, forcing the individual to recognise them. Group pressure can also encourage individuals to accept that change is needed.
  6. Higher commitment: When goals are agreed upon it gives a common purpose to the group, with the help of which individuals can harbour a feeling of self-determination and recognition through their contribution. Individuals who have contributed to finding a solution feel a greater commitment to its successful implementation.
  7. Helps fill loop-holes: You might be mesmerised by the concept and be absolutely sure of its success and this may result in you overlooking the faults within the concept. Discussions will help iron out these faults and result in a strong and flawless storyline.
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Here’s why you should pursue a career in TV Journalism

Posted on 18 June 2012 by Khushboo Motihar

Before I begin to tell you what TV Journalism is all about, let me tell you why should you take up Journalism in the first place.

“Journalism can never be silent; it must speak and speak immediately while the echoes of wonder, the claims of triumphs and signs of horror are still in the air.”

Journalism today can easily be equated with power: the power of gaining and spreading knowledge, the power to shape public opinion, the power to stir people into action, the power to experience the wonderful sights and sounds of the world and sometimes to witness scenes of utter devastation. With such power comes responsibility; the responsibility to ensure that the Truth Always Triumphs. And this is what journalism asks of all journalists: responsible use of the power they have.

TV journalism is a highly adventurous field which is as full of thrills as it is full of thorns. Just imagine this: You are covering an India-Pak match. You get the best possible view, you get to live the jubilation of the winning team, you get to feel the pulse of the maddening crowd and you get to interview first-hand all the famous cricketers whom you have seen on TV up until now.

While every journalist would love to cover such happy events, there are times when he is compelled to cover incidents like 26/11. It is these events which test a journalist as he is required to keep his angst aside and calmly present an unbiased report.

That’s how unpredictable, demanding and challenging the world of Television Journalism is and it is this volatility which makes it so exciting.

Being a TV journalist requires you to think objectively with clinical precision and not let your emotions get the better of you. It expects you to be a quick thinker and be on your feet 24×7, because who knows when and where the next breaking news will crop up?! TV journalism is a field that allows you to see the world through a microscope, to get to the depth of things and unearth all the details. It also gives one the opportunity to travel and interview dignitaries. One day you will be in a remote village in Assam to interview the local do-good panchayat and the other day you will be probably flown into Miami to cover a major happening/event.

But I am getting ahead of myself. Remember that you will start small and will be expected to do ‘boring’ routines in your first year at work. Your hunger to move ahead and learn is what will help you climb the ladder and grow as a TV journalist. The money will come and so will the recognition, but all of this won’t be possible without sheer hard work, dedication, and continued focus. You must know that you will lead a fast-paced life; you will have to report on-the-spot with no script in hand, report without giving personal opinion and sound interesting too.

T.V. journalism is a world of glamour and of cut throat competition, a world where one report can make you a star and the other a loser. So those who are always looking for an adrenaline rush and who want to be in the thick of things, I must tell you that TV journalism is the right choice for you.

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