Sunday, March 28, 2010

Slave trade back?

Just watch this interview of Gayatri, the co-owner of the Deccan Chargers. If you cannot watch it here, watch it on YouTube. It was conducted by a pea-headed IPL anchor, who didn't know her questions and was probably targeting the socialite crowd and those more interested in the Page-3 aspect of the game, rather than serious sports viewers and analysts.

Watch and hear carefully the question asked at 0:18. The way the question was framed is outrageous and extremely silly. What is the point that the interviewer is trying to prove? Brought up in the beliefs of the "breaking news" era, she just wants to create some sensation, using her heavily accented English. And she just succeeded in that! Her statement provoked me to blog about this.

Just look how casually she mentions the act of bidding for players. "Buying people like that!!" And on top of that, she goes on an ego massaging spree. Asking Gayatri whether she enjoys being in a position where she can "buy people" at the stroke of the gavel.

But, I liked Gayatri's response. Calm and composed. Nothing out of the way, just going-about-my-job kind of answer. That, I think is the hallmark of a person who actually realises the importance and impact of the position he or she holds.

The next question, at 0:34, almost scales the peaks of stupidity. Asking a business-person, whether there was some strategy in bidding for the players, who are "bought" not at a price that is uniform for everybody, but the better the player, the more is the cost in acquiring him. Come on lady, you can never ever run a successful business. I wish Gayatri had answered her like- "Oh no, what strategy, I had the money, I wanted to splurge it, so just bid for whoever I thought will cost more!!" And from here, the questions become a cliche. Watch for the question at 1:56 and you will realise what I mean.

But, it is alarming to see the downfall in the way interviews are conducted. Do you want to just fill the time before an innings starts or are you really interested in dishing out that "insider" bit of information. From what this lady does, I do not see any genuine interest in making things more informative.

On a parting note, I wonder if there is some mechanisms where these anchors can be auctioned. I would love to bid for this lady and then say in an interview- "I bought her because she is sexy, doesn't have too deep intellect and hence is useful to fill time whenever and wherever required."
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  1. What a title! I thought of it the same way when IPL first began. 'Buying' players! At home we used to discuss this: All the players standing in a row and the bidder scrutinies every single one and finally decides which one to buy. Reminiscences of the slave trade of yore!

    I am yet to see the clipping as my connection is slow and cannot buffer faster.

    The way your post ended was indeed hilarious. Gross commodifying is happening big time in IPL. I wonder if the players think of all this. maybe for them it's just the love of the game no matter what!

    A nice entertaining read.

    P.S: Aren't you eating anything interesting these days? No entries on that side of life!!!

    Joy always,

  2. @Susan,
    I'm more concerned with the terminologies used. "Auction" of players, "buying" and "trading" of players, etc. Football leagues in Europe too deal with players who come and go. But the terminologies used there are more sensible. A player is not "bought" by a club, but "signed up". And he is not "traded" but "transferred".

    For players, they take it as an opportunity to play against the best and earn some money. See, IPL isn't just about Sachin, Ganguly, Gilchrist and Hayden. It is also about Saurabh Tiwary, Manish Pandey, Naman Ojha, Swapnil Asnodkar, etc. These guys may not get to play in the national team, where most of the earnings are made. So, IPL helps them earn more in a sports career which lasts for not more than 15 years in most cases. So, nothing against them. I am only disgusted by the crass terminologies used here.

    About eating: well, I've not ventured into a new joint for long, but let me see, I should go to one pretty soon.