Friday, October 12, 2007

Sad, Misleading Scams…

Who will win? SMS IND or AUS to…
Who will be the next Indian Idol? SMS your choice…
To wish Musharaff on his birthday, SMS your message to…
Who will be the next contestant to be ousted? SMS your option…

Like I care! But it seems that quite a lot of us do… Just look at the number of people who send in their entries for such asinine stuff! All the while, it’s the (media) producers and the mobile operators who laugh all their way to the banks! When will the ‘blue billion’ realize that it is a rip-off?

And what is the guarantee that the SMS polls are actually used to determine the winner. Take the case of Abhijit Sawant. Gimme a break! Do you actually think that millions of Indians wanted this loser to be our ‘Idol’? Preposterous! The only poll that someone like him could hope to win is “Do you want this guy out of your face?” kinds. Let’s face it; we Indians determine winners on the basis of many factors, talent NOT being one of them. Case in point: ALL your talent shows! For a perspective, Indial Idol 3, about 700 million SMSes poured in. And an average premium SMS ranges from Rs 3 to Rs 10… you do the math!

The news channels have adapted this trend too! Apparently, it’s too good a gravy train to miss… And as a rule, if your audience thinks so, it has to be true! Talking about how responsible our media is, take a look at Ravi’s post. We are, however, discussing the oh-so-gullible Indian masses and SMSes here. And all the masala associated with it.

The premium SMS service, as I’ve already said, brings in obscene money for the operators. I don’t believe the operators when they say that the audience does not mind these rates. It’s like Musharraf claiming that Nawaz Sharif wanted a holiday in Saudi! But no matter how expensive, that does not deter bored aunties from voting (and gathering on streets) to show their support. Talking about aunties, I recently came to know that the soaps are also going the SMS way! No, I’m not talking just about the ‘SMS KSKBT to... to set it as your ring tone’ variety (dayum!) but these days, you can SMS options for the storyline… Possibly something like, “What do you want Tulsi to do next?”
A: Stare him down for a further 10 minutes
B: Cry in her trademark ‘constipated or sneezy’ style
C: Give a lecture on morality that would make Osama Bin Laden squirm
D: Cut scene, show someone else cheating on someone else
Send your option A, B, C, or D to….
That is the cue that our aunties wait for, and they get into SMSing frenzy! And the Ekta Kapoors of the world don’t even need ad revenue!

I tried an SMS poll once. Something to do with the World Cup 2007, I believe… Sent in my entry, got a reply to choose another option, and another and another till I gave up! Patience was never one of my virtues. But I fail to understand how people get hooked on to it and send away all their extra money to the ‘deserving’ producers and mobile operators. How selfless! Well, I don’t belong to that category. I just Keep Walking…


P.S.: To join the rally against SMS scams, Type F*** You on your mobile phone and send it to...

2 comments:

sue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sue said...

I know! Indians are mighty obsessed with the stupidest issues....things of no importance to the world and themselves.

If they had a sms contest about something worthwhile like an opinion poll on the reservation policy or global warming and maybe a discussion or a change in policy came out of it ....I would not mind spending 3 bucks on it.

But then again what percentage of Indians care about these issues over whether Prashant or Amit should become the Indian Idol ...... right?