Thursday, 9 January 2014

Ridiculous tag-line

By Vidya Jonnalagadda

Near the underpass to Rail Nilayam in Secunderabad, I saw this hoarding - "Because books never come with a shut down button" as a reason to send your child to a particular school. What does this mean? That other schools do not use books? Or that students in this school keep reading 24/7 because there is no option to "shut down" the books?

Adding to the ridiculousness of this tagline is the second USP of this school - "Digital Classrooms" (which would definitely have 'shut down' buttons; by the way, the USP is "Sprawling Campus", not spacious classrooms and labs). Now, would you not expect the USP to be something like "Huge Library" to boast that this particular school has an unusually large collection of books, given their claim about non-stop reading?

Really, who comes up with such tag-lines?

1 comment:

  1. 'Marketing experts' who design these advertisements are trained and rooted in the business of selling a lot of consumer goods and the like. It is all about 'instant appeal' to grab one's attention. There is no room for deep thinking and contemplation. Complex human and societal issues need to be reduced to a shampoo, chocolate or a motorbike. Everything has to happen in less than 30 seconds. They have to 'sell' the promise of the best education ever through a cheap sale. How does one accomplish that? Good news might be that the 'consumers' are well 'prepared' by the last couple of decades of rising consumerism so they can appreciate and assimilate the quick, superficial and cheap messages. Don't tell us that good education is more than one thing. Don't remind us that it takes 'an entire village' to raise an intellectually strong and socially conscious citizen of a community. Tell us just one thing. Keep it simple. And, keep telling us that same thing until everyone believes it is the only thing. Make us believe, over time, that education is as simple as the instant gratification one gets when one pops in a candy onto the tongue.

    At the core, people do care about learning. The thirst is there. There is no doubt about it. The question is about 'what'. What do people CARE about learning? If we cared about the right things, then learning becomes rich. Education becomes more meaningful.

    My favorite talk about what we should care about, in our education is here:

    (This talk will take 19 minutes of your time, not the 10 seconds you can consume the message on that hoarding).