Sunday, September 5, 2010

Small-town tales

Nitin Vaidya, COO, Zee Entertainment Enterprises and business head, Zee TV, recalled something lyricist Javed Akhtar had once related during a FICCI Frames speech. Some years ago, a television channel was presented with a story for programming consideration, and the person who had submitted the story was asked who the writer was. Munshi Premchand, he said, and was promptly asked to bring the writer to the channel's office!

That's over the top, you might say, but it does point to a fact that television's general entertainment channels  (GECs) are honestly admitting today.

As Uday Shankar, CEO, Star India, described it: "The winds of change blowing across the new India are lateral and multilayered and you can no longer be sitting in Mumbai and deciding 'this is what India looks like' in the stories that you tell on television. The entertainment operator has to reset his perspective to current Indian reality."

As the demography of television gets more heterogeneous, he added, middle and small town India are where the viewership volumes are coming from. "The hunger of the new, more aspirational, more assertive consumer is a lot more prominent there."

Full report here Hindustan Times

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