The curtains came down on one more edition of FICCI Frames on Thursday evening. It was three days of hectic talk sessions, frenetic networking, and generally being a part of the great M&E jamboree in this part of the continent. There were great stalls displaying new media-related digital technologies, promoting countries and major industry events like the forthcoming NAB Show at Las Vegas.
The I&B Minister was conspicuous by his absence this year – which meant policy announcements were missing. Many delegates expressed disappointment that several big names – either from Bollywood or from the M&E industry – did not show up this year. Some thought that the international presence was also below expectations. A lot of regulars to Frames over the years also felt that the format was too similar, leading to lack of freshness, and that the panellists from the media/broadcasting houses parroted the same ideas!
As they say, you cannot satisfy everybody, every time. Perhaps the FICCI Frames team would do good for everyone around, including themselves, by paying heed to some of these observations of delegates. But there is no gainsaying the fact that Frames 2008 was bigger than the previous edition. And FICCI Secretary-General Amit Mitra, in a private chat, was emphatic that Frames 2008 was as good as any, if not better. But fine-tuning always helps – the views of delegates should not be taken lightly.
I would like to take up the rest of the limited space that I have been afforded by my team to highlight their contribution. The idea was actually put it in my head by Shishir Joshi, Group Editor of Mid-Day. He called me on Friday morning to shower some praise for the great work done by exchange4media in bringing out a comprehensive daily FICCI Frames newsletter, especially given the situation we worked in.
It wasn’t the easiest of tasks for my very young but talented and motivated team. I had to pull in manpower resources from across all our Group publications – exchange4media, Impact, Pitch – and from the various bureaus, send them to Mumbai to work as a dedicated team for the three days of FICCI Frames. And they gladly, and with gusto, took on this onerous task. Mind you, they did this without compromising on their regular duties for their respective publications!
They did part of their reporting at the venue – from a tiny display stall that exchange4media Group had at the Renaissance, then rushed back all the way to our Bandra West office through the nightmarish evening peak traffic of Mumbai, and completed the rest of the production work till late into the night, even as the printer was mouthing blue murder over the phone! And they were back at the Renaissance by 9 am the next day, fresh as daisies!
As Editor, I had the luxury of sitting back and admiring their enthusiasm. Given what I saw, I decided to overlook the minor glitches. Glitches always happen in the print media business – and this was high-pressure work without the comfort of regular infrastructure and a regular office. Thank you Ben, Johnson, Shanta, Shamsad, Pallavi, Jayashree, Purna, Rishi, Tasneem, Rishi, Jagadeesh, Robin, Vinayak, Sagar, Anandan and Vilas. And a big thank you to you Noor for so ably taking up a leadership role and making my life so easy.
Finally, I would like to apologise to Prashant Pandey, CEO, Radio Mirchi, for him being mentioned as CEO of Radio City in our Day 2 Frames newsletter. That means I also owe an apology to Apurva Purohit for having “dethroned” her from her CEO’s seat at Radio City!
We will be back next year!