Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Now, Media Endorses Adultery

Guy comes home after a hard day's work. Finds his wife in bed, probably nude under a blanket that covers her from neck to toe. Gets a curious look on his face. Suspects something’s going on. Starts looking around for the culprit. And there in the closet finds John Abraham. But the ever loving John has a good excuse for being in the closet. He was “searching for his bag” – Skybags! John gleefully explains the beauty of Skybags and those ‘caster wheels’. Says those are handy to ‘run’. And then demonstrates it by jumping out and running away, dragging his Skybag with him. Husband nods in admiration at his wife and says “it can really run”. Skybags saves the day and the wife escapes being caught at her adulterous affair by a dumb husband. Are you laughing? Well, you’re supposed to because the whole thing is intended to be humorous.

Skybags - Adultery is Okay!
That would have been okay for an Adults joke book. But what exactly is such an ad doing on news and other channels in the MSM? Weren’t these guys supposed to be the ‘moral watchdogs’? Be it porn or murders resulting out of affairs, our news channels don’t tire telling us how Indian values are being lost, how society is dumbing down by the day. They even get psychologists to analyse us. Ah well, I suppose given that much of our media is essentially a Page-3 club these affairs and adulterous conduct would be normal for them. Lately, very few days have passed when some channel or the other hasn’t discussed porngate and have had debates over whether porn should be legalised.

First, let’s get the Adultery part over with. Under Indian laws Adultery is punishable with a fine or five years in prison and can also be grounds for divorce. The woman is not considered guilty and is not punishable. In the Skybags ad, it implies the woman is clearly adulterous but we can’t be sure about John because we don’t know if the guy is married. But that is about the ad and I guess Skybags, which was launched around 1992-93, must be having a hard time with sales and needed a silly ad to get back into good business. But this is about our media. And greed is their creed! If it brings in the moolah, anything goes.

The editor of a news channel, as with print media, is responsible for all content that appears on it. Be it news, be it ads, campaigns and even the scrolls that run at the bottom of the screen. So if this ad appeared on TimesNow, NDTV, CNN-IBN then Arnab Goswami, Barkha Dutt and Rajdeep Sardesai respectively would be responsible. True for other channels as well. So the very people who lecture the nation on morals do not think twice before carrying an adulterous ad. Is the ad illegal? No, in my assessment it is not. But surely, these editors seem to have missed the double standards they practice. Who knows, next time there might be an ad where a man rapes a woman and then escapes by using Skybags, since it’s quick on wheels, or some such product and our editors won’t mind carrying it. Looks like morals end where money starts. More importantly, these very channels who scream day in and out about women’s dignity and rights do not mind carrying an ad where one is portrayed as cavalier bimbo.

There is this Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI). This is another toothless body, like the PCI, made up of media channels and advertisers and advertising agencies. Still, I am sure even the ASCI will not deny that the Skybags ad is in bad taste. So the next time our media sermonises on porn, just remember they are fine with and endorse affairs and adultery. In their Page 3 culture there’s nothing wrong with that.

Moral of the story? If you’re planning to have an affair or commit adultery, make sure you have a bag with wheels. It makes for a great ‘Getaway’ and our media supports your adventure. Have a good one ! Hahaha!


  1. Of course it is difficult to sit in front of the electronic media with our children in the first place. Moreover, the pimps educate the total mass in the way they are born by displaying such culture.

  2. Moronic media as exemplified by the ad.

  3. Morality does not apply to our Supreme Justice Arnab, Queen Burqua & cavalier Wretched Deep. They can go on giving sermons to others but when it comes to them such things do not apply!!!

  4. Not long ago, the worry that was top in the mind of the statutory "advertisement watchdog" comprising of an association of broadcasters themselves was as to why some branded liquour firms were being allowed to promote their wares on cable without first having ensured that adequate and uninterrupted supplies were available on retail outlet shelves. One would get the impression the promotion of liquor is perfectly fine, if only care is taken to ensure generous supplies in the market. How does ample availability of a liquour brand become a plus point? It can be argued that more pertinent would have been a critical assessment of the spate of adverts featuring misleading and exagerrated claims for processed food snacks and supplements, household cleaners, tonics, cosmetics and tolietries ---seemingly endorsed by research labs and healthcare professionals---which have been devised to take undue advantage of the average consumer's lack of specialised scientific knowledge. But then, the statutory body's perception of priorities and values cannot but be the sum total of those of the broadcasters which constitute it in the first place.

  5. That advertisement is in bad taste; it is essentially an "Adults-only" ad. As a parent, I do not want it shown on any TV channel, not before 11 PM. I hope the broadcast regulator is reading this !

    Don't call me a prude, please. When we talk of laws against Adultery, I am one who thinks that (and I hope all legislators and other interested parties are also reading this!) that the law punishing Adultery should be repealed !

    Adultery is a crime in certain cultural settings, for example in Saudi Arabia. Stoning may even be part of the punishment. However, in very many developed and secular countries Adultery is not a crime. (Remember: Morality is a different matter from the Law). A Google search reveals the august company that India keeps in this matter... a matter of shame it is.

    As we discuss this, I hope it is not off-topic to hop further from Adultery to adult content. I am pained to regularly see adult content in "teaser" form on the front page of an Indian national newspaper called "Times Of India" (on their web site, not on the papyrus version, thankfully). The dirt is present every day. Obnoxious, TOI !

    I do understand that TOI is a Media make-money-by-hook-or Crook, which ran Private Treaties in the past and sold us adverts (containing falsehoods they may not have fact-checked) clothed as news (at erstwhile TimesMediaNet.com now dissolved, samples available!)... but do they forget that they have an obligation to society as well, perhaps second in priority after shareholders ? T.O.I is supposedly a national newspaper, damnit, and the web site dishes dirt under cover of news ! I may agree somewhat that porn is less harmful than Private Treaties advertorials and Paid News endorsements, but you can't fault me for wanting to see the rampaging media crooks brought under some checks; I am a parent.

    1. @ Anonym April3 8:45 PM, you will most certainly agree that lust and depravity lie in the eyes of the beholder. While sane individuals with a humane moral conscience will in all likelihood not laud the idea of forced punishment being meted by law to individuals in a consensual adulturous relationship(despite its certain undesirability and unpraiseworthiness), (I would say the pronouncements of the medieval Vijayanagara royal jurist Vijnaneswara are in bad taste) it needs to be recognised that many a time the police, misguided by a wantonly irresponsible section of the news media, has been seen to horribly harass slum-dwellers in trying to make them confess to "adultery" on many such occasions as when several males and females (not bearing an iota of lust towards each other) have been found to be sharing the same living space (yet however--Mark me---perfectly respecting each other)in thatched huts. The irresponsible electronic media crooks' "reality bites" intrusion into the private lives of families, as exemplified by the cameraman of "Kya Scene Hai" show who barged in without authorisation uninvited into the private residence of a commoner to film him sharing living space with a woman other than his wife and instigated towards and filmed the wife of the resident beating him up for alleged "immorality ?adultry" cannot be condemned enough in words. The vicious corporate media gets a "thrilling cocaine high" from inciting inter-personal strife, discord and enmity by fomenting misunderstandings in the public's family and social lives, exactly in the fashion of their scripted "reality game shows".

  6. You have to write about this Ravi ... news about army coup..in Indian express.. it seems another crooked story by media.

  7. Well, there are tons of ads that need to be banned for the sheer soft porn kind of content... it is clear that the creatives follow just one rule - SEX sells, so let us try to do that rather than get creative and make a ad that is sensible. some ads are completely whacked and that kinda fun is fine, but suggestive and using women as sex objects is insulting and makes me wanna puke when I watch them and see the utter lack of creativity in our ad professionals!!!

  8. Haven't seen the ad yet..but reminded me of this French Ad:


  9. The truth is that 1. Sure adultery exists but 2. No society, no matter how freakishly "progressive" it is, will applaud it, unless it is a joke or a feminist propaganda.

    In this ad, they are not just attacking family values, they are attacking basic human nature itself.

    In one minute, they achieved their feminazi goal.

    1. Show the hard-working breadwinner of the family as a bumbling idiot.
    2. Show the good looking man as a paramour with a getaway plan.
    3. Show the woman as a sexually empowered adultress who has the cake and eats it too.

    I agree. Its okay as an adult joke. But to show it in what looks like a harmless ad that makes way into living rooms of every house. While growing up, I used to LOVE watching ads. They were so innovative. Now they are just a poor clone of some european or american ad.


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