Category Archives: Sights and Sounds

“Power Your Clicks” with Photography Maestro Mr. Raghu Rai in Kochi


Nikon India is organizing “Power Your Clicks” photography seminar with ace lensman Mr. Raghu Rai in Kochi on March 18, 2015. The focus of the workshop is to gain in-depth knowledge of advanced photographic techniques, sharpen your skills and learn how to click like a ‘pro’. The session by Mr. Raghu Rai will cover topics on nuances of art and photography – the project conceptualization, planning and execution.

Power your Clicks- Photography Seminar 2015 (Kochi)

Session- Nuances of Art & Photography

Mentor- Mr. Raghu Rai

Topics Covered-
• Inspiration behind the project
• Project Conceptualization & Approach
• Field Work Preparations
• Photography as an art form

Reporting: 09:00 AM at the venue
Entry Closes at: 09:45 AM

Workshop Timing- 10:00AM – 01:00PM

Workshop Date: Wednesday, 18 March 2015
Venue: Casino Hotel, Willingdon Island, Kochi, Kerala

Fee: Nikon User Rs. 500 Other User Rs. 750

*For online registration please visit:
Power your Clicks- Photography Seminar 2015

*Registration is on first come first serve basis


Now, a VC Fund for Films! Thanks to Gurinder Chadha


Gurinder Chadha, director ‘Bend it like Beckham’ and ‘Bride and Prejudice,’ is to set up a venture capital fund to invest in film and television projects globally. Interestingly, the venture is named as Bend It Media Fund (BIMF) which is registered in  Cayman Islands, is a  $30 million open-ended investment vehicle, which will invest across four platforms – films, television, live theatricals and digital.

The 53-year-old Chadha will partner AVT Shankardass, financier of a number of recent Hollywood blockbusters, such as Captain America, Superman-reboot Man of Steel.

The fund will invest in small budget projects across geographies that focuses largely on content and will look to earn returns ranging between 25% and 30% from its investments. The global media and entertainment market is slated to grow at a compounded rate of 5.6% for five years beginning 2013 and generate revenue of $2.2 trillion in 2017, according to PwC.


In India the industry may grow at 14.2% to Rs 1.78 trillion by 2018, according to a recent report by FICCI-KPMG. BIMF plans to invest up to $10 million (Rs 61.5 crore) in its first year of operations, and has earmarked $4 million (Rs 24.6 crore) on film projects, $2 million (Rs 12.3 crore) each on television series and live theatricals and the rest on digital projects.

In 2009, the 35-year-old Shankardass, a New Delhi-based financier and producer launched Global Entertainment Partners, a $300 million (Rs 1,843.5 crore) close-ended 5-year fund that has invested in big-budget films. The investments then included movies such as Mission Impossible. Shankardass raked in box-office receipts of about $1.8 billion(Rs 11,061 crore) globally.

The Truths of Being a Woman by Kalki Koechlin

Kalki Koechlin changes our concept about a traditional Indian actress. “I have grown up being stared at!” At the India Today Conclave, Kalki Koechlin in a white robe, shuns patriarchy and at the same time appeals to men to change the way they look at women. In a monologue of sorts, the talented actress takes on to reveal the painful truths of womanhood. Titled ‘An Expression By Kalki Koechlin – Le Femme Terrible’, this one you should not miss watching.

Kalki’s performance throws light on the pathetic condition of women in the country. Poignant and hard-hitting, she talks on behalf of those thousands of women, who have lived in silence accepting their fates for centuries. She says, “It’s hard to breathe when you are being stared at…sometimes you are guilty for just breathing”, emphasising how society objectifies woman on a daily basis. Her fr

ustration is obvious, as she later confirms how she is affected by gender stereotypes and the shocki

ng rise in crimes against women.

As a celebrity, Kalki makes a few confessions too, about things you’d probably not read about her in the glossies. The fact that she was offered roles of prostitutes and item numbers after the success of her debut film, Dev D, makes us realise how Bollywood perceives its women. She goes on to say, “I want a clean face without any make up!” It’s something that we truly feel for Kalki.

30 yeard Kalki Koechlin is an Indian film actress of French descent who debuted in Anurag Kashyap’s critically acclaimed Hindi film Dev.D. She played the character of Chandramukhi in the film, a modern take on Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s Bengali novella Devdas, and eventually won the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal.

Koechlin subsequently featured in the comedy-dramas Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara  and Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, both of which were commercially successful, and earned her two more nominations for the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress. She also works as a co-screenwriter with husband Anurag Kashyap.

She married filmmaker Anurag Kashyap on April 30, 2011 in a private wedding ceremony. The two had been dating since the release of Dev.D. On November 13, 2013 both Koechlin and Kashyap issued a joint statement saying they were separating.

E-ink Reader Doubles as Phone, Touts Extra-long Battery Life


While smartphone technology continues to progress at breakneck speed, one area where customers are constantly left wanting is battery life. As phones get more powerful, the batteries powering these pocket computers struggle to keep up. If you’re an avid texter, use the camera frequently throughout the day, or send a lot of emails, you can be almost sure your smartphone isn’t going to last the day, regardless of make or model. Is the InkPhone the answer to all your problems?

CeBit kicks off in Germany today, and while the conference is mostly dedicated to big data and IT business in general, there is also some consumer tech on the show floor, including the InkPhone. This is a phone that uses e-ink as its primary display. Produced by Chinese ereader maker Onyx, the InkPhone is actually more ereader than smartphone. The company set out to make a budget phone/ereader combo. As a result, it’s not the most high-end device you’ll come across (certainly nowhere near the dual-screened YotaPhone), and you won’t be able to download your favorite Android applications after you buy the phone. Instead, you’ll have ereader functionality (of course) as well as the ability to make phone calls, browse the web, send emails, listen to music, and send messages, all on an 1800 mAh battery that promises to last two weeks.

Specs-wise, you’re looking at a 1 GHz processor (it’s a Rockchip SoC but we don’t know which one), 4 GB of internal storage, 512 MB of RAM, MicroSD support, and that 4.3-inch front-lit e-ink display. Again, definitely very low-end specs compared to other flagship phones available today, but that’s not the intention. This is supposed to be a low-end phone that goes forever, which means it would be great for those who often forget to charge their phones (older people and children) or those in the developing markets where charging your phone before you go to bed every night often isn’t an option. What we don’t understand is why the display is so small. Surely, if this is supposed to be an e-reader that doubles as a phone, the screen should be large enough to comfortably read text for extended periods of time.

One thing is certain: this is vastly different from the e-ink phone that was making headlines in February. Yota Devices’ YotaPhone made a big splash at MWC last month. With its secondary touch-sensitive e-ink display for displaying notifications, news, weather and more, the device aims to save on power by relegating these ‘always on’ functions and casual browsing to the rear display. That way, you don’t have to constantly wake the phone to check for messages or peek at the weather, and you can switch to using the rear-display for email and the like if you’re running low on battery. You can also use the rear of the phone as an ereader, in case you were wondering.

Of course, the Yota Phone with its higher specs and added functionality costs quite a bit more. The first generation (which uses a regular e-ink display instead of the touch-sensitive variety) is priced in excess of $600. The InkPhone goes on sale in Europe in April and will cost under $200.


Kudos to Kerala Tourism!

kerala ad

Kerala Tourism’s green initiative through a simplistic and creative ad campaign bagged the prestigious Olive Crown Award for communicating sustainability. Th awards are sponsored by the India chapter of the International Advertising Association. The innovative ad won the only Gold Award in the Press Services category, presented by Piyush Pandey of O& M to Ajith Gopinath, the Associate Creative Director at Stark Communications, which is Kerala Tourism’s creative agency.


This is one more feather in the hat for Kerala Tourism’s print campaign. Their ad also won the Gold Award at the Madras Ad Club Awards as well as the Das Golden Stadtor Award at the Berlin ITB Golden City Gate Awards. The print campaign encouraged travelers to save precious rain forests through their simple and conscious actions and has been cited by industry stalwarts as one of the most thought provoking advertisements and green marketing initiatives in recent times.

Fame, Popularity and the Definition of Intent


“Life is a reflection of intent”- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

The Economic Times ‘Brand Equity’ featured a piece on what Tarun Chauhan of JWT Mumbai had to say about fame, popularity and the importance of intent in the world of marketing. With the proclamation of a brand’s intent comes its purpose, USP and pitch- all in one. What the brand seeks to be to its audience can be read easily through the advertising campaigns that they propagate. Being famous isn’t the same as being popular. While popularity hauls in high brand recall and low equity, fame lasts longer and garners equity and respect.

Plenty of ads are made with the weak intent of ‘going viral’ or trending and do not make an impact on the big picture. They remain merely “good looking ads” and fail when it comes to brand building. According to Chauhan, “commitment solutions” should be preferred over “creative solutions”; long term solutions that can deliver on the promise of retaining customer patronage over the years.

The Story of an Internet Minute


With an ever progressive information highway and with the traffic flow on the Internet rising every minute, even Intel has taken to developing a new communications platform along with equipment managers and service providers to make data processing more efficient. Code named Crystal Forest, it aims to provide Mobile Internet Devices faster and easier communication infrastructure without comprising security.

Intel also stated that while the number of MIDs (Mobile Internet Devices) is now equal to the global population, the number of networked devices will be twice the number in 2015. While this mushrooming growth may seem a sure sign of Internet accessibility and information control, there also arises another issue. Nearly 640 GB of data is said to pass through the network during any one given minute. This staggering figure is nothing compared to what it looks like broken down- 204 million emails, 20 million photos, i.3 million videos on YouTube and so on.

There is a high risk of our information pathways crashing down unless the next generation developments they are subjected to can strengthen them and assure expansion and security sans interruption. More on this one minute story on What Happens in an Internet Minute!

Cause Marketing- a mine of opportunities

Social Marketing

Cause marketing refers to ventures that corporates undertake, involving the cooperative efforts of a ‘for profit’ company and a non profit organization. With internet users increasing day by day, the scope for online cause marketing is also on the rise. In India the only notable cause marketing in recent times has been the ‘Jaago Re’ campaign by Tata Tea. The time invested and the noble venture undertaken made sure that the impact on people was huge.

The effect of sponsorship branding and marketing may be hard to measure but cause marketing campaigns are a win- win situation as the investment to promote a noble cause never goes to waste. An audience will always root for products and services offered by a company they know is supporting any humane cause. Marketers can always invest on this general appeal; with the obvious gain of image building comes the secondary benefit of increased revenue from sales and increasing patronage. Marketing and communications strategists can always round off their high end tactics with a simple sign of care for the community. While contributing to the implementation of corporate social responsibility activities it also helps them follow the wise motto of “Doing Well by Doing Good”.

The Why and How of Listening


Every textbook of communication would testify that incoming information is equally important as outgoing communication. Listening is a quality that is becoming rarer as time progresses.Managers are immersed in checking exchange rates when their employees talk to them. Employees are busy scribbling notes during meetings, when listening carefully might do the trick more easily and effectively. A tactician cannot plan his client’s agenda unless he listens to what they have to say and arrive at a comprehensive understanding about the root of their problem.

Listening is a world apart from simply hearing. It is a choice. When you choose to listen you are letting your mind relax and take in information that comes from an external source. In corporate communication, and more importantly public relations, this is translated to mean a level of trust. While listening to someone you give them your complete attention and time; more important than a dozen documents, emails and harried meetings. When the speaker understands you are being attentive, he/ she will have no qualms about confiding in you. It doesn’t matter if you agree or disagree, the fact that you choose to listen will convince the speaker that you are ready to arrive at a mutually beneficial understanding. Listening dampens conflict. This in turn increases the productivity of the work force. Employees and clients who are assured that the management will listen to them will automatically be ready to perform better. When companies develop business relationships with their customers they have to make sure their ‘listening mechanisms’ and feedback channels are fine tuned to the customers’ needs.

Take heed of facial expressions, gestures as well as non- verbal cues. Pay attention when people choose to divulge their strengths and weaknesses so that you can chart a game plan where players can collaborate to cover each others’ deficiencies. Listening is a continuous process. Apart from being an effective feedback device, listening also helps generate a general awareness about clients and their environment which in turn fosters empathy.

The Age of Utter Transparency


If everything were transparent, PR would be a dead art. Though public relations deifies transparency and truth, it is a hard- hitting fact that PR professionals would have to switch careers if all their clients became oh-so-honest. Transparency is more of a principle than a tactic in PR. And most clients tend to forget this basic rule of thumb, quite frequently.

Let us take into consideration the grey area called reputation management; a branch of PR that has broken off and flourished of its own accord. We have come to accept cover ups and crises management strategies as part of ‘effective image building’. even when complete disclosure is inevitable and threatens to bring any reputation toppling down, there is a tendency to downplay the same and portray the company as a victim of circumstances instead.

Even in- house communication tends to be a exaggerated and flattering at times. While employees know the show behind the curtains, employers simply turn a blind eye towards the obvious and try to make it as unimportant as possible. Picketing and employee strikes are often the results of failed talks between both parties. Open forums are seen as an opportunity for grievance redressal by employees and as a crisis by the management, instead of a feedback platform that can help bring about mutual understanding if both parties are willing to cooperate.

With Wiki Leaks and every bit of possible information easily available on the Internet honesty has become a mandatory characteristic of corporate communication. Even though the possibility of ‘lies’ cannot be ruled out PR personnel struggle to keep afloat the notion that their client and company is 100% believable, trustworthy, accredited and a lot more; the simple reason being that the audiences can easily find any skeletons if they wish to.