MTV unveils Rubber Sing as Aids ambassador

MUMBAI: Fit Me baby One More Time! If You Wanna Rock Please Roll! These are among the words of cheeky and sage advice that music channel MTV's new Aids ambassador Rubber Sing for its viewers.On the occasion of World Aids Day 1 December 2006 MTV unveiled its plans to create awareness about the menace of Aids. Rubber Sing its ambassador is an animated character in the shape of a condom. By singing, and playing the guitar and offers advice in a way that is entertaining. The ambassador was unveiled by Hollywood actor Rupert Everett 'My Best Friends Wedding' who is also the UN ambassador for Aids and by MTV VJ Sophia.

MTV India VP, GM creative and content Ashish Patil says that the campaign is called 'Listen To Rubber Sing'. Creatives featuring him will air on the channel from 1-7 December 2006. He will also appear in radio spots on Red FM as well as in print. MTV is is also using outdoors in the form of bus backs, hoardings.

Online one has to choose a condom before one can enter the MTV India site. One can also get wallpapers, screensavers and words of advice. On the mobile one can SMS Rubber to 6882 for advice Patil says, "It is important that MTV not only defines a generation but also leads it. One half of MTV's target groups 15-24 in India are HIV infected. So it is important that we play our part in getting the word out. While MTV is not an expert on Aids we know how to talk to young people. We will also be conducting road shows in terms of our VJs visiting popular youth hangouts. Over the next week we will have special half hour programming from 4:30 - 5pm. On 1 December at 9:30 pm we will be doing a Zindagi Zindabad initiative which basically aired clips from our music summits.

"On air we will be having graphics, lower third innovations and bugs. For instance the channels logo has a ribbon. Our VJs will also mention the problem in shows they host. In an episode of our show Kya Baat Hai we have a sting operation of sorts. This sees an MTV employee pretending to be a client and asking a prostitute for a favour. Our show Super Select will also have messages inserted."

MTV VJs also appear in spots. One of them sees a VJ addressing the problem of men embarrassed of buying condoms. 'Do you want to die of embarrassment or do you want to die of Aids?' is the message. Another message attacks the misconception that Aids only affects homosexuals and prostitutes. Then how do you explain a five year old child dying of the infection? asks the message.

Everett pointed out that the best way to deal with the problem is to talk about it. "We have to fight the problem of Aids together. I know that in India it is considered taboo to talk about sex in some quarters.

This is something you'll got from the British. Not talking about sex is a British tradition and I am surprised to hear people say that it is an Indian tradition. If you look at India before the British landed here India was more open to dialogue on sex. In that sense as a Briton I feel a little guilty that some of the effects of the British Empire are still being felt. It would help if Bollywood stars got into the act of spreading the message. It would give a face to Aids and help get the message out to some conservatives who try to pretend that the problem does not exist. Having said not talking about Aids is something that America went through in the 1980s.

Throughout the Reagan era you never heard the Aids word. The only public personality who spoke was actress Elizabeth Taylor which is not surprising given that America is conservative."

When asked by this writer about the role a celebrity plays he pointed out that a celebrity helps get the message out that much faster. Of course having a celebrity makes the media more interested in what is going on. He also rebuffed the notion held be religious clerics that talking about sex is tantamount to propagating it. "Talking about sex helps demystify the subject. What might propagate sex is consumerism.By this I mean parents not having enough time for their kids and so feeling guilty allow them access to things like the internet.

"So you have nude photos appearing on a child's computer before he/she is mature enough. The problem with any religion is that clerics do not want to confront humanity as it is. They want to look at it as it should be - an idealised state. The other problem in India are your laws which make homosexuality illegal. So many of them have gone underground which it makes it that much more difficult to help them.Also I believe that legislation in India is going to change which will not only make the prostitute a criminal but also the client and the pimp. So that whole profession will go underground. So to reach out to them will that much more difficult."

In criticism of humanity as a whole he points out that Aids, which is an extraordinary disease, has shown humanity to be bigoted, judgemental and self-loathing."It is amazing how much we hate each other. Sometimes I feel that we would rather let a person with Aids die rather than approach him and offer help. That being said my aim is to at least prevent the next generation from getting it. We also need to get treatment in the form of drugs to more people. Right now as I understand it only a fraction of Indians infected with HIV are undergoing drug treatment."

Latest Reads
CNNMoney new section will be about the fastest growing economy; MoneyStream app launched

MUMBAI: Attracting 1.8 million average monthly page views, witnessing a 37 per cent growth in video consumption and 16 per cent in unique browsers month-on-month from India in less than a year’s time is not smooth. In its ambitious plan of global expansion, CNN Digital is leaving no stone unturned...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Content a 'Game of Thrones'; AT&T's control over HBO, Cartoon Network, Warner Bros faces regulatory lens

The global media landscape is resulting in a new juggernaut as an internet and cable behemoth yesterday purchased an entertainment conglomerate making the former unmatched in its size and reach to consumers through home broadband, smartphones, satellite television and a battery of movies and cable...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
US$ 4.5 bn expected from IPL rights; SC recommends accounts scrutiny

The Supreme Court on Friday froze all financial transactions between the BCCI and state cricket associations by directing the apex body not to disburse any funds till it resolves to abide by the Justice RM Lodha panel recommendations on reforms by 3 December . The top court ordered that none of...

Television TV Channels Sports
TVS Tyres is co-presenter for Asian Champions Trophy 2016

Continuing its strong connect with sports, TVS Tyres has associated with Asian Champions Trophy 2016 by becoming the co-presenter. The Asian Champions Trophy is one of the premier hockey tournaments, a much sought after annual international competition promising some great hockey action. This...

Television TV Channels Sports
Q2-17: Zee Learn declares maiden interim dividend

The board of directors of the Essel group’s education company Zee Learn Limited (ZLL) have declared a first time ever dividend of 5 percent per equity share of Re 1 each for the quarter ended 30 September 2016 (Q2-17, current quarter).

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Whether BARC action can stop unethical practices?

MUMBAI: Can businesses and industries practise their art of selling fairly although they have 'Fair Practices' training during academic courses, workshops and several ISO and other certifications? There seems to be the fear of the lawman, and not the law in India. If the traffic cop is watching,...

Television TV Channels Viewership
TV Superhighway: beIN, Yaddo, AfricaXP have joined us, says Magine CEO Ambuj Goyal

CANNES; Magine has secured partnerships with four of the industry’s most exciting sports, documentary and entertainment content providers. Partnerships with beIN, the international media group and owner of MIRAMAX; Yaddo, the new documentary streaming service headed up by former head of The BBC’s...

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Colors emerges strong on strength of Naagin I & II

MUMBAI: One of the top rated shows Naagin Season 2 helped Colors reach a top-ranking position.

Television TV Channels GECs
Pakistan Broadcasters Association to oppose PEMRA Indian content ban

MUMBAI: The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) shocked both Pakistan and Indian broadcasters when it issued an order blanking out  all Indian content from Pakistan’s television channels on 19 October.

Television TV Channels GECs

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories