Culture Round-Up: Netizens mourn Sidharth Shukla, celebrate Neeraj Chopra

VMAs, the Emmys, and the MET gala gave much fodder to memers; reels kept the audience hooked

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Oct 14, 2021 8:55 AM

From Paralympics to the return of IPL, to VMAs, Emmys, and MET Gala, the internet had a lot to talk about and celebrate in the month of September. And with India’s record-breaking vaccine administration as well as the announcement of ex-gratia relief of Rs 50,000 for the next of kin of those who passed away due to COVID, even the conversations around the pandemic became more positive. Here are some of the other top trends that indulged the Indian web space in September 2021, as highlighted by Starcom’s monthly Culture Roundup. 

Sports fervour continues

Like the Olympics in August, September too was dotted with numerous sporting events which kept the netizens engaged. The first half of the month witnessed conversations around Paralympics, where the Indian contingent showcased its best-ever performance, bagging a total of 19 medals for India. US Open in tennis and Grand Prix Italy lagged behind football (premier League matches). The latter half of September also saw IPL matches resume- cricket players, IPL teams and score updates have been heavily trending on Twitter. 

Pop-culture & Entertainment

When it came to pop-culture and entertainment, celebrities and new content led conversations. The untimely demise of actor Sidharth Shukla and conversations around him by celebs and fans alike swarmed the internet. Divya Agarwal’s Bigg Boss OTT win and the trailer release of Shehnaz Gill-Diljit Dosanjh-Sonam Bajwa starrer Punjabi film Hosla Rakh were also very popular on the internet. 

Neeraj Chopra- the Indian athlete who rose to fame last month after his historic win at the Tokyo Olympics has become an audience favourite, from making appearances at reality TV shows to starring in campaigns and ad (the attest Cred Ad being a prime example) he is a star on the rise.

September also witnessed popular events like the VMAs, the Emmys, and the MET gala. As always, celebrities’ looks from the MET gala started multiple meme trends- from AOC making a statement with her gown, to Kim Kardashian clad head to toe in black.

Kanye West’s much awaited album ‘Donda’ was released and fans have been showering their love and praise for this new release. BTS once again has been in the trending conversations- from performing at the United Nations to the release of their new song ‘My Universe’ in collaboration with Coldplay.

On OTT and Instagram

On OTT, isney+Hotstar continues to be the most popular platform but with the merger of Sony and Zee- it might face some fierce competition in India. Netflix, for the release of Kota Factory Season 2 collaborated with multiple stand-up artists in its #OutOfSyllabus campaign. Money Heist Season 5 that was released this month, in partnership with Pepsi to create special limited edition ‘golden’ Money Heist themed cans. Swiggy had a virtual treasure hunt on Instamart for these limited edition cans. Prime Video’s Mumbai Diaries has garnered praise from audiences all over for the acting, and for depicting an aspect of the 26/11 blasts that had not been shown before.

On Instagram, the power of reels is immense and brands and artists leveraged this emerging trend. A Sinhala song ‘Manike Mage Hithe’ became extremely popular in India by the medium of memes. Puma in collaboration with Kareena Kapoor created a reel which has a whopping 71.5 mn+ views.

Reels are also becoming bigger by the day as a source of entertainment and audiences are creating multiple reels on popular trends and also their own versions of the popular trends (eg.- Touch it by kidi, Did it on ‘em by Nicki Minaj. Doja Cat’s Woman etc) Brands and users are creating and sharing memes for engagement and entertainment. From MET gala looks to why arranged marriages are scary and beyond, memes have kept the internet busy. The scope of memes is so wide that Dream 11 in its new campaign partnered with Khaby Lame- a popular meme sensation, to become one of the first Indian brands to leverage an international meme sensation. 


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