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A Very Pixelated Bombay Girl And The Wisdom in Censorship

2nd September, 2009
The video of Alisha Chinoy song 'De,de,de,de dil de de Mujhko', a single from her 1994 album 'Bombay Girl', was deemed too improper, almost indecent, outright Adult for the vetted audience of the national broadcaster - Doordarshan.  The hot video directed by Ken Ghosh came out in 1996 quick on the heels of success of their previous collaboration for video of 'Made in India' - a phenomena that led to the boom of 'Indi-Pop' which continued for about half a decade till the fizz slowly died down. 'Indecent Exposure' by Alisha Chinoy didn't keep Doordarshan.from showing the video in one of their 'Indi-Pop' countdown shows running on DD Metro. They did show it, complete, no cuts, it wasn't banned outright, but they did pixelate the offending parts. So the audience, perplexed, got to see heavily pixelated cleavage of Alisha Chinoy. Let's just say, as you can see from the sample image, it didn't have the desired effect. Let just say it left a substantial audience imagining things.
If you got kicked out of the room every time the video played, or if the channel was deliberately changed, or if the TV was shut down, or if you were ordered to fetch water every time the video played - or if any other Indian Home Censorship Stratagem was unleashed on you to keep you from watching this 'bad' video or if you were just too young to care, you can now watch the video on Youtube [Here].
But. First, this friendly message will greet you:
This video or group may contain content that is inappropriate for some users, as flagged by YouTube's user community.
By clicking "Confirm", you are agreeing that all videos or groups flagged by the YouTube community will be viewable by this account.
[Confirm Birth Date]
Veteran users of Youtube will know that Youtube has a flagging system in which objectionable material (anything Sexual, Hateful, Spamful, plain Malicious) can be flagged by registered viewers and when enough flags have been raised the video is considered 'inappropriate' and from them onwards, users (only registered users) can see that video and that too only after an explicit consent which comes in the form of some button clicking to 'Confirm Birth Date'.And the video is thought 'not be suitable for minors'.

It is a baffling case. Here's something more interesting, 'Dil De De' video has been up for almost two years but has only about twenty thousand views. So, the flagging certainly hurts the incoming traffic (chances are you won't see it in search result) just like an 'A' rating hurts a film's ability to generate revenue. By flagging the Alisha Chinoy video, in a strange and ironic way, The Wisdom of Crowds has vindicated the oft-ridiculed rigid stand of Doordarshan (and governments and their boards) on Censorship according to which it is ############and############of nation. Nothing beats pixelation.



  1. I'll come straight to the point.

    I have now spent a greater part of my weekend going through your blog. It means I am not getting done any of the few million things that shall remain languishing on my things to do list.

    I blame you squarely for that. I also blame you for bringing back really good memories [Rajan Pillai to MAdhu Sapre - the number of hours spent in college/school dissecting these topics !! ]. I could do without the Mithun da pic though!! Finally, I am going to accuse you of being thoroughly irresponsible. Surely you must know the far reaching implications of making public the secret strategies of 'Indian Home Censorship Stratagem'! Have you considered the impact this will have on the Indian population? Parents will spend sleepless nights thinking of newer strategies, and some of us will now have to accept ...that we were being taken for a ride .... [me??? I knew all along ;) ].....What was the more common 'strategem' you had to put up with??

    Maybe you should put some kind of a disclaimer for those who happen to stumble across your blog so they can know what to expect!! It isn't for everyone, but for what it's worth, it's got me hooked!

    PS: Remember the following videos: Stylebhai, Thanda Thanda Pani and Anaida - ova ova??

  2. I can't even begin to tell how often I get to hear from people for eating into their time and screwing their schedules.
    Ends up giving me a sadistic pleasure just like the pleasure of subjecting helpless reader to the full glory of Mithun Da :)

    Because I had a tendency to get into debates about morality of censorship...I was always got to be the king of remote. So no stratagems for me.

    And I have a cousin who actually bought the audio cassette of Thanda Thanda Pani.

  3. +1

    to that count of diturbed yet addicted readers. You should be implicated and rewarded some goodies from "Indian Citizens' Entertainment" forum.

  4. "Indian Citizens' Entertainment" forum could send me some Hamdard Ka tonic Cinkara.

  5. Thank you so much for bringing out live our B&W childhood memories. Much much appreciated. Regards/Sunita


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