Wednesday, June 15, 2011


15 June 2011


By R Rajagopalan
NEW DELHI: The Centre has finally crossed the digital barrier to adopt the new age media of SMS messages and Internet advertisements to reach out the masses.

The Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP) has been asked by the Information and Broadcasting Ministry to use bulk SMS and advertisements on popular websites instead of remaining stuck to publicity through newspapers, television and radio.

Tenders were issued last week inviting applications for providing the bulk SMS and Internet advertisements and the government hopes to start rolling the publicity stuff on the digital media in the next two months.

One factor which has always pained both the government and the Congress is that they are doing so much with newer and newer programmes but the message of these programmes is not reaching the people effectively to generate enthusiasm.

I&B Minister Ambika Soni has also given the idea to the Congress to go for the bulk SMS messages to reach out the people. No matter to be late than never was the response of the Congress sources when told that the BJP has been effectively using SMS for poll campaigns since 2004 and the RSS outfits have been creating nationwide campaigns through the bulk messages, including those sent out to support the fasts of Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev.

The sheer number of over 70 crore mobile phone users in the country makes the SMS the best media to reach out the people and that too a fraction of money DAVP spends today on electronic and print media, the officials point out.

They said impact of the SMS messages is not known and hence the DAVP will run the service on a pilot basis for three months to test the effectiveness.


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