MRF ‘blimp’, redux

Show of hands, please — how many of you who were at yesterday’s game actually saw that bloated balloon up in the sky?

It wasn’t there, by all accounts I’ve been getting. And it is not the first time — readers had written in after a couple of the Ahmedabad games, to report that they were at the stadium, and had seen no sight of the blimp.

Apparently MRF is at the forefront of technology after all — it is now sponsoring, with considerable help from the commentators, its own version of alternate reality.

Oh, and have you been keeping an eye on those ads, mostly in between deliveries, that are structured to look like they are being flashed on the giant scoreboard? You know they aren’t actually on the scoreboard, that it just the broadcasters first zooming onto the board, then patching in the ad, right?

Right. Just saying.

Update: On Twitter, I was informed just now by ‘Flyfiddlesticks’ that the blimp is usually off the stadium, and that therefore folks at the ground won’t get to see it.

So let me see if I understand this — somewhere, you have a giant balloon floating, and you train your TV cameras on that from time to time, and for the TV audience the impression is that it is floating over the stadium?

And the point of that is?

36 thoughts on “MRF ‘blimp’, redux

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  2. hi guys… forget about the blimp what is m.r.f pace foundation doing for the last 20 years. how many fast bowlers could they develop for the last 20 years?m.r.f shold replace dennis lilee and appoint some other capable person for training indian players.irfan pathan developed lots of his talents with the help of wasim akram of pakistan. iknow the indians wont be happy to hear any pakistani name but as an indian i think he can develop some great fast bowlers for india.pls pls pls forget about this m.r.f blimp s*** and try to make india proud ,that is my plea to m.r.f directors as i am soooo embarassed of what happened to india in 20 20 world cup 2010.and also to selectors do consider robin uttappa as he is a great player of fast bowling.cheers.

  3. I’m an American only getting to see the tournament by the 4 matches directv is showing on their 101 network. I did a search to see if there were any comments on this “blimp” and found this site. I love the sport of cricket, The HD broadcast picture quality is first rate and your stadiums look very modern. Frankly, calling this balloon a blimp makes your country look far less modern than I’m sure it really is. It looks precisely like a small WW2 barrage balloon that was originally white and has now faded to an ugly yellow, embellished with a cheap advertising sticker partially peeling off of it. Something this amateurish would have been laughed off of American television 20 years ago as totally unprofessional. Calling this balloon a “blimp” was a very poor attempt to show off India’s technology to a worldwide audience and in my opinion will do the absolute opposite.

    • This “balloon” was not laughed off american tv 20 years ago. Infact from what I can work out, this blimp has been operating in the us and around the world at olympic events for years. Its made by a company called “tcom” for the us military.

  4. Disappointed to see this post so late after the discussion is almost over.
    From what I hear, it is rather comical that the blimp became such a laughing stock. It wasn’t supposed to be so. The idea was to have a camera on it at each possible ground which would make all the advertising around it digestible. As it turned out, you are not allowed to have cameras high in the air according to security regulations. So the authorities were left with a big useless white balloon in their hands. But the show had to go on for the promised advertising, making commentators look ridiculous-er and ridiculous-er.
    Coming to why many of you cannot see it in stadiums, it is not in all stadiums. I am not sure if this was how it was planned, but my guess is since it now acted as nothing more than a giant bloated hoarding, what difference would it make hiring or not hiring it. So all the blimp ads were played from replays. They did not even have live cameras positioned on them when aired.
    It is something similar with the ads on big screen. If you look back at some of the first matches played, live feed cut to it and they played ads straight as it was supposed to be. However, the video and audio quality couldn’t be controlled and at times, you could see small parts of the screen going out of order or the sound from the screen being less than required. This obviously wouldn’t please the ad-men, and it became easier for the tv guys to use that old friend of theirs, replays.

  5. I am not able to understand why everyone should be calling this a gimmick or atleast sound like they are being cheated. Organizing an event and telecasting live does take money and the organizers are entitled to make a profit. If everyone agrees to a pay channel mode of viewing the matches then there would not be any need for this kind of revenue generation.
    Moreover, the ads on the giant scoreboards idea, was effectively used in Soccer world cup matches to run ads on the sideboards without interrupting the live telecast. This was advertised then as break-through technology and has become common-place now.
    As long as we want to enjoy free television along with high quality broadcast and good players / matches, we should be ready for these “innovative” marketing techniques.

    • The problem is not with advertising per se, but the lack of good quality / innovative advertising. Tell me, would you rather watch the Fevicol ads or commentators saying the same stupid thing about the blimp match after match. In fact, after this over kill most of us are p***ed with brand MRF, so its crores of money gone down the drain for them.

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