Expect more ads in closing ceremony

  • Chetan Chauhan & Nandini R Iyer, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • |
  • Updated: Oct 05, 2010 00:19 IST

The 83 minutes of advertisements during the 'live' telecast of the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games on Sunday may have irritated you - like the thousand of others who watched the spectacle on Doordarshan.

Specially if you had relatives calling from London or Dubai to rave about Rahman - and he was nowhere on your screens yet.

Doordarshan though is sticking to its guns on this one - officials say that's the way to make money.

What's more, there will be more ads in the closing ceremony, DD officials say.

Justifying Sunday's advertisements, Prasar Bharati Chief Executive Officer B S Lalli said: "We have a revenue sharing agreement with the Organising Committee. Nothing was missed in the telecast. All details were shown."

Officials though admit the show was being telecast with almost an hour and a half's lag.

"We'll be looking at the entire issue for the closing ceremony afresh," Lalli said, indicating the national broadcaster may come up with an alternative method of displaying advertisements.

One such is the 'L' shaped format used frequently during broadcasts of cricket matches.

Some ads were shown on Sunday in that format as well.

Not that the earnings were too impressive. The 5,000 seconds of advertising, brought in about Rs 4 crore. Of this, Rs 35.6 lakh went to the OC. That left DD with just about Rs 3.5 crore.

DD has already spent Rs 160 crore for the High Definition TV technology and officials say they expect to net at least Rs 50 crore revenue from the total telecast during the Games.

Senior government officials pointed out in DD's defence, the national broadcaster had got money from the government on loan and will need revenue from advertising to pay it back.

One official said that while a private broadcaster might have edited chunks of the ceremony to incorporate advertisements, DD had shown every minute.

Officials also insisted in other nations, all broadcasters who held exclusive rights ran ads. Viewers though say the national broadcaster should have run the show without the breaks.


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