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WASSUP - The Cultural Trends Report published by Ogilvy Asia(September 2011)

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Ogilvy & Mather's Cultural Insights Trends Report - September 2011.

Ogilvy & Mather's Cultural Insights Trends Report - September 2011.

A brilliantly insightful report on what's hot, new and exciting across Asia.

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WASSUP - The Cultural Trends Report published by Ogilvy Asia(September 2011) WASSUP - The Cultural Trends Report published by Ogilvy Asia(September 2011) Document Transcript

  • Wassup September 2011
  • WassupThe cultural trends magazine fromOgilvy & Mather Asia PacificEdited & designed by Kunal SinhaEditorial assistant: Madhumita BhattacharyyaCorrespondents:Elaine Dai (Beijing)Neha Punjabi (Mumbai)Donnah Alcoseba (Makati City)Wine Chua-Leonardo (Makati City)Tania Chan (Singapore)Justin Chow(Singapore)Naoko Ito (Tokyo)Azusa Fukai (Tokyo)Natalie Gruis (Ho Chi Minh City)Siddharth Roy (Colombo)Mei Wu (Taipei)Caryl Heah (Kuala Lumpur)Beatrice Yong (Kuala Lumpur)Josephine Phang (Kuala Lumpur) Vanich Jirasuwankij(Bangkok)Zubair Siddiqui (Karachi)Serena Park (Seoul)© Ogilvy & Mather Asia Pacific, 2011
  • Fast Company magazine’s ranking of the most innovative companies in theworld has more firms from Asia featured than ever before. They represent awide range of business opportunities which draw upon culture, both pastand emergent. Dawning Information, a manufacturer of supercomputers isable to tap into China’s vast pool of scientific talent, while Tencent hasturned the obsession with gaming into a profitable venture. Shaadi.com is allabout making connections online, not of the casual kind, but ones that endup in computer-savvy twenty-somethings in India finding a partner for life.Fab India connects village artisans to urban consumers. In this issue, we talkto Asian designers, who aren’t quite Jonathan Ive, but someone will getthere soon.As creativity gets recognized as having economic and social value, studentsand parents will demand changes to deeply entrenched education systems.Our conversations with high school teachers are fascinating: they reveal howstudents have changed so much, and yet the parameters for evaluationhaven’t. Regrettably, many brands continue to hold out being at the top ofthe class, or first in the race, as a promise, piling on that pressure.We’ve made a departure from our previous issues, by reporting about whatpeople across Asia are elated about, not raging against.; our Waiting Listsection continues to show immense diversity – ranging from the material tothe spiritual.So, Wassup with you? Do let us know …
  • 14 countries.20 correspondents deeply immersed inpopular and leading edge culture bring youCultural Insights that will make a worldof difference to your business SOUTH KOREA BANGLADESH PHILIPPINES SINGAPORE INDONESIA SRI LANKA THAILAND MALAYSIA PAKISTAN VIETNAM TAIWAN JAPAN CHINA INDIA
  • contents Look who‟s talking: Asian designersKnowing me, Knowing you: High school teachers Playing on my iPod Elated about Waiting list Tense about Everyone‟s talking about Online shopping
  • Look who’s talking Asian designers
  • Look who’s talking …Sabina is an ambitious young Pakistani designer.A graduate of London College of Fashion, Sabinalaunched her label Bon-Chic in Karachi in March2008. Her fun casual wear and embroideredevening wear, all meticulously cut and stitched,has been quickly snapped up by trendyKarachietts ever since. Designer Hee-Jung Jung was born in Korea“I think art inspired me to become a fashion in 1974. After graduating from ESMODdesigner. I tend to look on fashion as an art form Seoul in 1996, she shifted to London whereand work my ideas through the medium of clothes she studied at Central St Martins, and thenand textiles,” explains Sabina, who graduated launched her women‟s wear label HEEfrom London College of Fashion in 2010 in fashion JEONG. In 2001, she launched her firstdesign technology with a major in surface textiles. store in Seoul.Sabina tries to give every woman a unique and In 2004, the HEE JEONG label was nameddifferent look to help them stand out in the crowd. the Promising Designer‟s Collection at“I feel everyone should make their own trends. Seoul Fashion Week. Her avant-gardeEveryone has their own personality and through silhouettes made the most of the naturaltheir clothing they can tell the world what they textures of the materials she used. Severalreally are on the inside. “I try to help my collections were shown from 2005 to 2008customers find their perfect look and, most in Seoul, Paris, New York and Shanghai,importantly, what they are comfortable in.” inspired by Asian traditional lines. In the 09/10 fall/winter Seoul Collection, she wasSabina feels younger clients are more open to inspired by the Korean poem Nature,trying new designs. “They usually want something which found expression in beautifullythat is very daring and makes a statement.” colored garments and fine detailing and silhouettes.Innovation is critical to Sabina, to help give herdesigns a distinct identity. She likes working with Jung is now supplying to seven boutiquesflowing fabrics like chiffons and jersey, in Korea and plans to launch a flagshipembellished with brooches, stones and beads. store for her label in Seoul. She alsoShe buys her raw materials in bulk from regular dreams of spreading her reach to Japan,vendors. China and Europe.
  • Look who’s talking … Art is all about inspiration for Katayama. But she also has to bear in mind what the client wants, and what works for the consumers. She does not feel limited by her role as a commercial designer. “Artists and designers have different jobs. Yes, a designer has limits to what she can do, but that is inevitable when money is involved. But one of the fun things about being a designer is that you get to look at trends and develop an ability to identify designs that draw people‟s attention.” She often goes for walks to gain inspiration from the streets of Tokyo. “I also visit the website www.ffffound.com, where you find a lot of cool, design-related stuff,” she adds.Katayama Chie is a designer at OgilvyDesign‟s Japan office. For the past couple ofyears, she has had the chance to work withmany eminent clients, including The Coca-Cola Company for two kinds of beverages –OLO OLO smoothie and Real Gold energydrink.She has been passionate about art since shewas in kindergarten. After graduating from adesign prep school, she enrolled in an artcollege to broaden her perspective in the fieldof business marketing, packaging design andadvertising. “As a kid, whenever I cameacross products that I thought were notvisually appealing, I always thought I could dobetter. I wanted to become a designerbecause I wanted to create better designs.”One of the greatest things about being adesigner at an advertising agency, she feels, isthe amount of inspiration and excitement shegains from her team members. She also enjoysbeing able to contribute her perspective to thebrand building process for a wide variety ofcompanies and products.
  • Look who’s talking …Jason Wu‟s talent has been recognized by two ofthe most influential opinion leaders in fashion –US First Lady Michelle Obama and editor-in-chief of American Vogue, Anna Wintour.His work – a romantic one-shouldered design,appliqued with tiny flowers and strewn withSwarovski crystals – is now part of fashion history,to be displayed at the Smithsonians NationalMuseum of American History collection inWashington DC.Jason Wu was born in Taipei, Taiwan, where his Jason Wu and Anna Wintour backstageparents run an import-export business. He is the at the showing of his spring/summer 09first to credit them for always giving him 100 per collectioncent support.He later moved to a boarding school inConnecticut, US, studied sculpture for a coupleof summers in Tokyo and then spent a year inRennes, Brittany, on an exchange programvisiting Paris on every available occasion, wherehis love for fashion was confirmed.Returning to New York, Jason enrolled in theParsons School of Design where, early on, hewon a fashion doll design competition. He wenton to create the Fashion Royalty collection forIntegrity Toys.After an internship with Narciso Rodriguez, Wulaunched his own label with the backing of his US First Lady Michelle Obama with theparents in 2006. His love for beautiful cocktail Wu- designed dress she wore for theand ball gowns almost immediately won him inaugural ball at the White Houseacclaim as a natural successor to the oldergeneration of occasion wear specialists such asOscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera.This was followed by his first appearance inAmerican Vogue in January 2007, in which Britishmodel Lily Donaldson wore one of his designs inan editorial shoot by Steven Meisel.
  • Look who’s talking …Ye Qian is a 24-year-old Chinese fashiondesigner who gained fame after winning thedesign talent show My Style/魔法天裁 in 2008.In 2009, he founded his own line YE‟S, with thetagline “Yes is no!”, a declaration of the Foo Aiwei is a 29-year-old fashion designer whobrand‟s rule breaking image. The limited was born and raised in the heart of Borneo. Sheproduction, non-seasonal collection comes up moved to Singapore when she was 18, andwith a special concept for each season. pursued a degree in fine arts before moving on to apparel design and merchandising. ManyBorn in Fujian province, Ye‟s designs had expected her to create a label that featuredincorporate elements strongly inspired by quirky and whimsical clothing, but instead shelocal culture, such as the story of Matsu. He rejected convention and expanded her line toalso likes adding elements drawing from include all kinds of artwork, blending designsocial issues, such as sustainability and and art in accessories, books and typography.helping the underprivileged, into his designsto promote public awareness. In an article in Shift magazine in Japan, she shared her „See You Tomorrow‟ concept, whichJust two years after his label was launched, reflects a persona she uses to create and tellYe‟s designs are selling on the shelves of stories, sort of like an alter ego. It allows her tosophisticated boutiques including BNC and step out of mundane, everyday life to create herDong Liang Studio, and also have found favor own happy place. It also signifies hope and thewith celebrities like actress and singer Zhou possibility of seeing a close friend or familyXun and actress Yao Chen. member that you may not be able to see again in real life. It is hard to define the Ye‟s 2011 spring cruise collection scope of Aiwei‟s featuring exaggerated draping and expertise. For her, it is irregular cuts more a marriage of both her passions – design and art. She draws rich inspiration for her work from sources as varied as ballerinas, film-makers and writers. Her creations can be found at local boutiques such as A Curious Teepee, Egg3 and Asylum in Singapore.
  • Look who’s talking …“Style is knowing who you are, what you want Shimmy‟s goal is to make guys look good at theto say and not giving a damn,” says the 24- same time as making them look unique. “I wantyear-old Sri Lankan Shimalka Bodaragama, to make them the center of attention, for once!”otherwise known as Shimmy. she says.At the age of 18, Shimmy ventured into the Shimmy has also reached out to her audienceworld as a model and thereafter won the on Facebook with a group titled Vswear “To beModel of the Year title in Sri Lanka. Soon after, Unique”, where all her designs are available forshe joined Sri Lankan Airlines as a flight public viewing. Since then, she has also seen astewardess, but subsequently realized that it spike in order numbers, and has received awas not the path for her. She then entered the number of positive comments.Academy of Design and majored in fashiondesign. Word of mouth plays a large role when it comes to marketing for Shimmy. All those who haveThat is when opportunity came knocking in the purchased her shirts and have been satisfiedform of Art Walk, a show that exhibits a fusion with their look and feel have spread the goodof art and fashion on the catwalk. In 2010, word to friends.Shimmy showcased her talent for designingmen‟s dress shirts for “daringly young boys atheart”. The Art Walk 2010 collection receivedrave reviews which prompted her to launchher own designer collection of men‟s dressshirts titled Vswear, “To Be Unique”. Shirtswith cuts “off the hook”, and prints not usuallyseen in men‟s wear were her forte. Shimalka @ Art Walk Show
  • Look who’s talking …Born in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Ha Thuc He is routinely featured in Vietnam‟s leadingNhat Minh graduated from the Ho Chi Minh design and fashion magazines and his clients areCity University of Architecture with a degree the who‟s who of Vietnam‟s business andin design in 2005. Bagging the prestigious entertainment industries.New Designer of the Year Award from theVietnam Collection Grand Prix at that time Nhat Minh loves natural fabrics like wool, silkthrust him into the limelight. and cotton. Each collection is a juxtaposition of color, texture and clever detailing and he playsHis first job as a designer‟s assistant was with constructs of masculinity and femininity bywhere he learned the importance of innovation using soft draping alongside structured tailoring.in design based on the overall structure of thegarment. He launched the Nhat Minh Label in He hopes that fashion in Vietnam will grow to beHa Noi with a women‟s spring/summer 2003 more tolerant and accepting of world trends.collection and expanded into men‟s wear in "We should trade different aspects offall/winter 2006. His first boutique opened in Vietnamese culture with aspects of western andHo Chi Minh City in the fall of 2005. eastern culture. It would be an experiment for local designers to show the world that there is"I always loved it when Vietnamese women fashion in Vietnam.”would wear their most beautiful dresses toparties, weddings or other celebrations. So Itried to capture that in my designs," thedesigner said.
  • Look who’s talking …Gabby Dizon is a game developer and designer forBOOMZAP Entertainment in the Philippines. The 31-year-old has been creating computer games since2003.Among Filipinos, it is Facebook games likeFarmVille that are most popular, says Gabby. In netcafes, it‟s shooters like Counter-Strike, online gameslike Ragnarok and DoTA that keep gamers hooked.The game design biz is a technical one. “It‟s hard tokeep up with all the trends and technologies, so Ichoose to keep up with a specific set (casual gamingon mobile/web) and social media,” explains Gabby.“There are too many things to keep track of onlineand you have to use your time and focuseffectively.”The trend now is towards mobile and social games.“The biggest games today are not the multimillion-dollar console games but hits such as Angry Birdsthat are seemingly on every device.” Gabbyadmires founders of the casual game companyPopCap (creators of Bejeweled, Plants vs. Zombies),which takes apparently simple gameplay and makesit into fun games that people play for years. Theyalso ensure that their games are available on allpossible platforms. The company was recentlybought for almost $1 billion dollars by ElectronicArts.“Filipinos are very creative and are naturalgamers,” feels Gabby. “We are already strong onthe art side but still have to develop the design,engineering and coding sides of the business. Ourcompany has over 40 people from all over SoutheastAsia but more than half of them are from thePhilippines, which goes to show how much faith wehave in Philippine talent.”Gabby‟s company‟s first real hit was the Awakeningfranchise. Awakening: The Dreamless Castle(http://www.boomzap.com/games/ awakening-the-dreamless-castle/) is a casual hiddenobject/adventure game available for the PC, Mac,iPhone and iPad and has been translated into ninelanguages.
  • Look who’s talking …Indian fashion designer Nachiket Barve believes that good clothescan do wonders to lift one‟s spirits. Though many of us might feelquite the reverse while skimming through fashion magazine filledwith images of unreal models, Nachiket thinks that if the dressdoesn‟t fit there‟s always a bigger size to be had.This designer, born into a family of doctors, has a post-graduatedegree in apparel and accessory design from NID, Ahmedabad,and has also studied at ENSAD Paris on a scholarship awarded bythe French government. He followed that up with spells underMichael Kors at CELINE in Paris, a part of the LVMH luxuryconglomerate, couturiers Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla and textiledesigner Neeru Kumar.The NACHIKET BARVE label was launched in 2007, which is acontemporary, fresh and innovative look at luxury. His latest lineAbstraction was showcased at the Lakme Fashion Week on August18 in Mumbai.Nachiket finds inspiration in the eyes of women when they wear hiscreations and look at themselves. Even the most famous celebritieswho wear his creations, such as Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, SonamKapoor or Jaya Bachchan, only want to look their best. Fashion, hebelieves, is a way of living. Where you eat, which newspaper youread, who you hang out with, what you talk about -- all of it will havea bearing on how you dress.There is a great difference in how women dress from city to city inIndia, says Nachiket. “In Delhi there‟s still a certain amount ofconformity. They will have their hair blow-dried, wear Gucci orCavalli glares. They will match their heels with their bags, and haveperfect eyes, perfect lips. Mumbai is a little more disheveled.Women there will carry a Birkin bag when they are wearing shorts –they are more about dressing up with a little dressing down.”The desire to look good every day has come about very recently,says Nachiket, and we‟re now ready to shell out big bucks for thelatest styles. The desire to look international is now ingrained,alongside our Indian roots. Like wearing an Anarkali with LouisVuitton.
  • High school teachers in Asia
  • Knowing me, knowing youMeet Blossom Villafuerte, a teacher in the Philippines…How long has it been since you were in high school?Not too long, actually! It‟s been nine years since I entered high school.What kind of teaching style does your school use? How is it different from the school youwent to?My high school was very traditional – we had a series of lectures, some practical sessions andwritten tests. A decade ago, high schools in the Philippines were all largely traditional in thesense that the teacher would establish authority and the students would obey. Otherwise theycould expect to be punished or reprimanded. What we see more and more of today is thatteachers adjust to students and employ ways to engage their interest. In my school, we followthe empirical method. We try to understand how students prefer to learn; that‟s how we planour curriculum.How are high school students different now?They see teachers as equals, probably because parents nowadays talk to their kids in that way.They‟re also more interested in studying abroad and understanding different cultures. It iscommon for high school students to go on exchange programs and spend a year studying inanother country.What are the popular subjects?Still not science and math! What I see isthat many students are more interested insubjects they can immediately apply indaily life. One class we have here is theLife Skills Program, which addressessubjects such as relationships, dating,prom etiquette and career building. Thevalue of the class is concrete. Also, a fewyears ago, a large number would opt formarketing or business in college. Today,high school students have so many optionsto succeed even on the creative side andthey pick streams such as advertising,fashion technology, styling or culinarystudies.
  • Knowing me, knowing you Wang‟s students were born in the 90s, and she thinks, as a result, that her students are moreWang Yue has been teaching Chinese at Shanghai confident than those of previous generations.Fenghua High School since 2000. She sees herself The fast-pace of development andmore as a big sister to her students than as a modernization has also made them moretraditional teacher, thanks largely to the school‟s accepting of new ideas. They are quick to pickpsychological training program, Listener. The up – and drop – hobbies that she has neverprogram was started in 1985 to make sure support even heard of such as board games, Judo,systems were in place for students who experience Cosplay and Lomo photography. “Theypsychological problems. Wang encourages herstudents who need guidance to join the program. usually move onto other things within a few“You can‟t guide a student without fully months. New trends always seem to beunderstanding them and winning their trust. The coming out,” says Wang.program is the bridge of communication betweenme and my students,” explains Wang. Her students are also more willing to take risks. One of Wang‟s student has submitted anSince most of her students are the only children in application to suspend studies at the end oftheir families, they often don‟t have anyone to talk the semester to spend more time painting. Hewith when they face problems they don‟t want to wants to get into a good art school in Europeshare with their parents. In Wang‟s role as a listener, for college but isn‟t able to focus on his art asshe tries first to understand her students and thenprovide solutions to help them stay on track. With much as he needs to while tackling the rest ofthe quality of life improving in China and society his course load. “This is something I would notbecoming more open, these students have grown up have dared to do when I was young, but forin a different environment than their predecessors. today‟s kids in Shanghai, their parents are able to afford the expensive tuition fee for overseas study, so scoring well in the national college entrance is not the only way to achieve success.” The Sociological Training Program of Shanghai Fenghua High School
  • Knowing me, knowing youLe Thi Bich Thuan is 25 years old and teaches As the youngest teacher on campus, Thuanmath at FPT University in Vietnam. Having loves that it has been easy for her to get closemoved from her home in Dalat to Ho Chi Minh to her students. “But you have got to makeCity, it was always her dream to go to university sure they stay within limits. Students shouldn‟tand become a teacher. get too casual with you or you will lose the authority you need to be a good teacher andAfter teaching all day, Thuan tutors students at role model”.night in order to have a good quality of life andto be able to afford all the exciting things she Thuan finds that most of her students are stilllikes to do in her free time, from shopping and interested in pursuing core subjects such aswatching movies to catching every single K-Pop math and science. Entrance exams forconcert. university really focus on these areas, she says, so it is important that students are proficient in them from their early years. “It creates the path that many students continue to follow in university.”
  • Knowing me, knowing you“There‟s definitely a change in the schoolenvironment and the level of ambition students havethese days compared to my time,” says KumikoSuzuki, a high school teacher at a Japanese pubicschool in Tokyo. Meher has been teaching literature at a local school in Karachi for the past fiveKumiko also sees a difference in student interaction years. Literature and math are the twothat has been driven by technology. “I‟ve been subjects her students always take up. Butteaching for almost 15 years and it is striking to see Meher feels math is popular not so muchhow kids spend more time on the Internet and because the students like it but becausephone. Even older people seem dependent on the it is important for those who want to govirtual social platforms rather than traditional, face- into business later in their lives.to-face interactions.” Coaching centers have picked up a lot ofShe is currently in charge of second and third momentum in Pakistan, and after school,graders. “I have taught many subjects over the most, if not all, children head to theiryears, like social studies, history, and designated tutors.environmental studies. Students seem to enjoysocial studies because we touch upon current issues Meher is happy that her students arethat students can relate to.” She also feels that it‟s respectful toward authority, and shebeen increasingly difficult to motivate students to believes that good parenting is behindfocus on school work. “High school grades don‟t this. “But that doesn‟t mean studentsreally count in college applications under the aren‟t vocal. They stand for what theycurrent educational policy in Japan. Students are believe in but they are very careful notmore focused on going to prep school for the to cross any boundaries,” she says.college entrance exams,” says a concernedKumiko. Outside class, football fever seems to have gripped Meher‟s students over theIn 1998, Japan‟s ministry of education declared a 30 past few years. They all carry red orper cent cut in the academic curriculum to give blue key chains and scarves thatstudents yutori (Japanese for „rest‟). “Students‟ represent their favorite teams. The boysmental well-being is something we have to even play more football than cricketconsider. Japan‟s education policy might have now. The girls like watching football, butreduced the academic load of students entering prefer to play basketball.college, but students seem a lot more relaxed andhappier.”
  • Knowing me, knowing youThere was a time when a high school student waspopular if he studied hard or played hard. But now,believes Ellen Lin of Taiwan‟s Song-Shan Senior HighSchool, young people look up to those who study forthe future and play for future. The Affiliated High School of NationalEllen, who has been teaching at the school for about Chengchi University (HSNCU), Taiwan,10 years, feels that students in the past only had only is an experimental school.one ambition – to pass the college entrance exam.However, with the proportion of students entering To increase teachers‟ effectiveness anduniversity nearly at 100 per cent, students have to use space as efficiently as possible,turned their focus to searching for their true calling. HSNCU is designed to have four spaces:They are also able to follow their dreams more than classrooms, teaching research rooms,previous generations who had to comply with their discussion rooms and home-base. Theparents‟ wishes. teaching and research rooms are near the classrooms belonging to theToday‟s students are game to try new things, to see related subjects. HSNCU also keepsmore of the world. For example, a student might join teachers of the same subject togetherthe high school basketball league and then still study to enhance the functions of teaching,every night for the TOEFL. Another student might research, and counseling of thechoose to moderate a serialized online novel and also teachers.manage a dance club at school at the same time. Also,more and more students participate in camps of Every class has one home-base indepartments at university to better understand their which students have their personalchoices for the future. lockers. Classes of the same grade are kept in one area to make theIn an effort to succeed, young people are pulling out interactions easier and moreall the stops. Ellen remembers a boy who walked convenient.around the island for a month to “better understandthe Taiwan spirit”, while another one played anonline game continuously to earn a trip to compete ina gaming tournament in Japan.But there are downsides also – some students will pullpranks that are out of control because they want toget attention. Students are no longer afraid ofauthority. Though now with teachers more likely tosee the students perspective, it sometimes works outfor the best. “The school was most powerful in thepast, but nowadays you have to listen to the students,”says Ellen.All students seem to have one thing in common –Facebook. It is a platform on which to connect withclassmates and friends.
  • Knowing me, knowing you“Students today represent the short-cut Vinod is concerned about the current educationgeneration,” says Vinod Senadeera, system in Sri Lanka. In a nation which has theheadmaster at St Thomas College, Mount highest literacy rate in South Asia (92 per cent),Lavinia, Colombo. there is an acute shortage of teachers. Teaching as a profession is not exciting anymore becauseAccording to Vinod, students today are more it doesn‟t pay well. In fact, the low pay-scale iskeen on acquiring experience than mere the main reason for the ongoing indefinite strikeeducation and he believes educational called by Colombo university teachers. This, ininstitutions should wake up to embrace this. turn, is making students opt for little-known foreign universities to get a UK, US or AustralianSt Thomas has recently shifted from a degree. The lack of a governing body to“stream-based” system to a more “subject- ascertain the credibility of these mushroomingbased” curriculum, which means Thomians – institutions is further adding to the trouble.as students of the school are called – neednot pick science or commerce and instead Vinod believes that education is an extremelycan choose specific and unusual important ingredient for Sri Lanka‟s progress.combinations. Students can now opt for He hopes that the government along withmathematics and physics alongside, say, educationists will formulate a policy in line withpsychology and modern history. the progressive environment in other parts of the globe to offer a fillip to teaching as a“The reason behind this shift,” says Vinod, profession, and also better guide students on“is that the youth today doesn‟t necessarily course and career selection.attach value to professions such as medicine,engineering or law anymore. I have known somany students who started studying tobecome a lawyer but opted out as they lostinterest.”Sports is another domain that St Thomas as aninstitution lays stress on. In fact, their termsare customized to offer students pursuingsports the flexibility to keep up with theirstudies.Vinod believes the digital domain hasempowered students in numerous ways. “Itoffers students width and depth ofinformation unmatched by any textbook orlibrary.” But Vinod also believes that SriLankan teachers need to hone their digitalskills in order to guide students better whilesifting through the sea of information.Students have become bolder thanks to thedigital platforms, says Vinod. “Today, if youdon‟t like a teacher, you can simply put up astatus update on Facebook and be sure tostart a conversation.”
  • Knowing me, knowing youDiana Fernandez has been a teacher in Singapore forthe past 19 years. She started teaching at Gim MohSecondary School in Singapore and is now apermanent staff of Singapore Chinese Girl‟s School.“I teach English and Literature, but sometimes theschool even makes me teach the girls P.E. (physicaleducation)!” she says.Diana has observed the effect of social change on herstudents. “Things have really changed in society, soof course it affects the girls. Our education system isnot moving fast enough for them.” In her school, anindependent institution, there are more optionswithin the academic environment to do what‟s bestfor the students. “But I know it‟s different in otherschools that don‟t have that much freedom,” shefeels.The increasing emphasis on arts programs and sports The more popular sports are basketball,education in Singapore has also affected the students. netball and tennis. On the other hand,Participating in co-curricular activities in school is arts programs such as dance, drama andcompulsory because it encourages interaction debate are demanding attention. Butbetween students. Many girls now want to have two since students who do well in sports areCCAs, though in the past they could barely cope with considered „cooler‟, many students stillone. “I‟m worried that they won‟t have enough time pick both.to relax.” If a student opts for a sports-based activityas well as an arts-based one, she would only get back Diana feels students nowadays aren‟thome at around 6pm or 7pm. well versed in ethics, and are not necessarily respectful of their elders compared to students five years ago. “It‟s not too bad in SCGS, mostly because I drill it into their brains! But when I see kids outside, I‟m ashamed when they behave badly,” she says with a sigh.
  • Playing on my iPod* * or at my favorite KTV parlor
  • Playing on my iPod* JAPANSRI LANKA “GO GO SUMMER!” Damith Asanka Kara Mata Heenayak Wela http://www.youtube.com /watch?v=7AO2Wa- http://www.youtube.co DVRU m/watch?v=A5Jz2LbnO AM&feature=related http://www.youtube.com /watch?v=l_pC95haJTE “You” Juju http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=UVLeK9Q5teMRomeshDigu Dasa “パレオはエメラルド”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E SKE48dXYU2EbUwo&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/INDIA watch?v=6OenMFm-I5M Mika and Amrita “Desi Beat” from the film Bodyguard www.youtube.com/wat “Senorita” from the ch?v=zd5e7zgKxgg film Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=Bo9MEM-LsX0
  • Playing on my iPod*PHILIPPINES CHINA Maroon 5 Jam Hsiao “Wild Dreams” Moves like Jagger http://www.xiami.com http://www.youtube.co /widget/0_177026472 m/watch?v=suRsxpoAc 1/singlePlayer.swf 5w&feature=related Jane Zhang Nicki Minaj “My Looks” Link: Super Bass http://www.xiami.com/ widget/0_1770216428/ http://www.youtube.co singlePlayer.swf m/watch?v=4JipHEz53s U&ob=av3e TAIWANPAKISTAN Jeremy Liu Miss You Quratulain Baluch http://www.youtube.co Akhian Nu Rehen De m/watch?v=wZNFMOR3 http://www.youtube.co AxE&feature=related m/watch?v=Xvy3hnw_ pU0&feature=feedlik VIETNAM Van Mai Huong Neu Nhu Anh Den http://mp3.zing.vn/video- clip/Neu-Nhu-Anh- Den-Van-Mai- Huong/ZWZC7FFA.ht ml
  • What‟s making people really happy, and why?
  • Elated aboutThe Banga brothers are two names on a growing list of global Indian business leaders, aroster that includes CEOs such as Citigroups Vikram Pandit and PepsiCos Indra Nooyi aswell as the deans of both Harvard Business School and INSEAD. Lakshmi Mittal may have hadthe advantage of growing up in the family business, but ArcelorMittal has been transformedinto a global powerhouse thanks to his leadership.What factors account for the rise of India-trained business minds? “Our colleagues in ourAsian offices are asking the same question,” laughs Jill Ader, head of CEO succession at theexecutive-search firm Egon Zehnder International. "Their clients in China and Southeast Asiaare asking, „How come its the Indians getting all the top jobs?‟”People like Motorola‟s Sanjay Jha or Berkshire Hathaways Ajit Jain (tipped to be WarrenBuffetts successor) have succeeded due to talent and drive, and not because theyre Indian.Nooyi too has spent most of her formative career years outside the country. So is it that theseoverachievers just happen to be Indian? As Ajay Banga notes, "You are who you are becauseof what you do, not the color of your skin.”Yet data suggests ever more Indians are scaling higher corporate heights. In a study of S&P500 companies, Egon Zehnder found more Indian CEOs than any other nationality exceptAmerican. Indians lead seven companies, Canadians, four. Among the C-suite executives inthe 2009 Fortune 500 were two mainland Chinese, two North American Chinese and 13Indians, according to a study by two professors from Wharton and China EuropeInternational Business School.“The earth is full of Indians,” wrote Salman Rushdie. “We get everywhere.” Unlike, say, aSwede or a German, an Indian executive is raised in a multiethnic, multi-faith, multilingualsociety, one nearly as diverse as the modern global marketplace. Perhaps why he – or she –is poised for success.
  • Elated aboutBaseball fans around Taiwan got up early on Saturday morning to cheer for Taiwans top pitcherChien-Ming Wang, who was back on the Major League Baseball mound for Washington Nationalsafter a serious shoulder injury had kept him away for more than two years.At Taipei City Hall, large screens were set up for a live broadcast of the game against the NewYork Mets, attended by hundreds of excited fans. So what if the Nationals lost 8-5? Viewersstarted pouring in before 6am, some dressed in red and white, the colors of the Nationals‟jersey. "Today is Chien-Ming Wangs first game back, so Im dressed in red in the hope ofbringing him good luck," said 27-year-old Raul, who used blue tape to make Wangs number"40” on his red jersey to show his solidarity.Its the time of year that Chinese high schoolgraduates get excited about the start ofcollege. It usually begins with receipt ofacceptance letters, but this year it startedeven before thanks to a text message sentout by Nanjing University of Science andTechnology. The university sentacceptances via text message that struck achord thanks to the trendy writing style. Thissoon sparked the “coolest acceptance letterbattle” on Sina Weibo, China‟s micro-blogging site. As of early August, therewere more than 350,000 acceptance lettersposted on Weibo.com, with millions of usersexpressing their views on which school hadthe best missives. An application has evenbeen created to make fake, funnyacceptance letters on Weibo.com.
  • Elated aboutBasketball is considered the most popular sport in the Philippines. So it wasn‟t surprising thattickets to the Smart Ultimate All-Star Weekend sold out in five days. The BIG event wasbrought to the Philippines by one of the top telecom service providers, SMARTCommunications, the brand that sponsors the national basketball team (Smart Gilas), whichplayed against the NBA stars.More a friendly game than a competitive one, the SMART All-Star Weekend gave Pinoybasketball fans a chance to see their NBA idols in action with their top local basketball players– who themselves seemed somewhat star-struck by the visitors! Amidst a barrage of bad news, Pakistanis have found a designer distraction in the form of Hina Rabbani Khar, the new minister of foreign affairs. Why is she such big news? For one, she is Pakistan‟s first female foreign minister, and the youngest. And for another… well, she‟s quite the looker! News channels in Pakistan and across the border have been full of images and stories about the 33-year- old. Sure, we should all be more focused on the foreign issues plaguing Pakistan for which Khar has been appointed. But for now, Pakistanis are just glad to finally have someone who presents a more refined image of Pakistan to the world; and as one newspaper said, puts our “best face” forward.
  • Elated about The last weeks of June were eventful for many Singaporean soccer lovers. On July 23, fansOn July 4, 2011, former Sri Lankan cricket gathered at Jalan Besar Stadium for the first legcaptain Kumara Sangakkara addressed a packed of the World Cup qualifiers.Lords Stadium to deliver the Cowdrey Lecture,the only Sri Lankan cricketer to ever be given It started badly after the Singaporean Lionsthis honor. allowed Malaysia to score in the opening 30 seconds of the game. The scores were leveled,In his speech, Sangakkara spelled out all that is however, when Aleksandar Duric tookwrong with the cricket administration in Sri advantage of a free kick to find a hole in theLanka. He explained the important role cricket Malaysian defense and got the ball past thehad played in rebuilding the war-torn country goalie.and why it is crucial that cricket be kept awayfrom politics and selfish motivations. Fearlessly Singapore put in another three goals at ahe attacked the cricket board and its greed, steady pace but after captain Shahril Ishak waselitist attitude and politics. He brought to light substituted, the home team‟s defensethe machinations which threaten to tarnish his weakened. Malaysia took advantage of this,beloved game and took a stand against those in scoring in the 69th minute. Another goal apower. minute later brought the scores up to 4-3, leaving fans of both sides on the edge of theirAs expected, immediately after Sangakkara‟s seats. Finally, Duric scored again in the 81stspeech the cricketing authorities expressed their minute to seal the deal at 5-3.discomfort and declared that “it will be dealtwith firmly”. But the media, social leaders and The second leg of the game was held on Julyaverage Sri Lankan all came out in full support of 28 at Bukit Jalil Stadium, Kuala Lumpur. Thehim. The national media echoed Sangakkara‟s Singapore team had to keep the score low, assentiments and condemned political interference a difference of over two goals would seein cricket. Eminent cricket writers like Peter Malaysia through. They met much resistanceRoebuck labeled the speech a turning point in from the home fans in KL, but still managed tocricket history. Fans used social media to wrangle a draw of 1-1. That pushed Singaporeexpress solidarity with the former captain. through to the third round of the 2014 World Cup qualifiers for the second time in history,One cannot say if things will now change in Sri with an aggregate score of 6-4.Lankan cricket. Still, the fact that someone hadthe guts to speak up in a country where freedomof speech is often curbed, brought hope tomillions.
  • Waiting listIn the spring of 2011, Jeremy Scottmade sneaker history when he fused acuddly teddy bear with a chunky MetroAttitude Hi. This season, he continuesthe trend by looking east to China„sgiant bamboo eaters for inspiration.The new Jeremy Scott x Adidas PandaBear Sneakers were released in theChinese market on August 1 at twoselect retailers in Beijing and Shanghai.Priced at a comparatively highRMB1,680, they have still become amust-have item amongst the young andtrendy this fall.Even before the official launch, strongdemand was demonstrated for thesneakers on Chinese social networkingsites Renren.com and Weibo.com.According to updates on Renren, thesneakers were sold out to Adidasmembers even before the officiallaunch! Thousands flocked to Taipei„s Ximen area to watch the second official trailer of Seediq Bale, one of the most-anticipated locally produced films, to be released later this year. An earlier trailer for the epic, whose NT$700 million (US$24 million) budget is a record high in Taiwans film history, was screened in cinemas and posted on YouTube where it received more than 10,000 views. Seediq Bale, which means “real men” in the Seediq language, is to be released in two episodes. The film, which took 12 years to make, is set against the backdrop of the Wushe Incident -- a large-scale uprising by the Seediq tribe against their Japanese colonizers in the 1930s.
  • Waiting listThe summer is university application season Mansi Sheth, who scored 92.2 per cent in theacross India, and that brings with it some SSC board exam, was ecstatic when she sawstressful times. So imagine the shock when that she had been awarded a seat in the collegeShri Ram College of Commerce in New Delhi of her choice. "I have been allotted a commerceannounced that it had pegged its first cut-off seat at HR College, Churchgate, which was myfor its hugely popular B.Com (Honours) course first preference," she said. But for Kirtana Shettyat a staggering 100 per cent! who scored only 2 per cent less in the ICSE board exam, Fridays list was a bitterAcross the board, cut-offs are rising and most disappointment. "I got a seat in a commercestudents will depend on waiting lists to get college but it is not the one I wanted. I hope toadmission. There seems to be no place for improve the result in a later list," said Shetty.weak students. Lokesh Bhandari, a student ofAhlcon Public School in Mayur Vihar, was Cut-offs for other students for the best collegeshappy with his aggregate of 91.25 per cent - have been creeping upwards for years.till the cut-offs were announced. “I am University administrators have said it is partlyinterested in economics and mathematics, but the result of grade inflation in school exams --I think Ill have to wait till the third or the fourth meaning that more kids are leaving school withlist to see if I can get through any of the North higher test scores, causing colleges to raiseCampus colleges,” he said. their cut-offs in order to make sure they still get the best students. But India is also facing a supply crunch when it comes to higher education. It now has about 500 universities but needs four times that number, say government experts. The Amarnath Shivlinga resembles the symbolic Shiv idol, and is formed naturally from ice. On June 29, when the yatra began at the 12,729-foot-high cave, the icy idol was 18 feet tall. By the end of it, thanks to an unprecedented rush of devotees, the idol had completely melted away. Still, worshippersPilgrims’ progress apparently stood in queue for over sixDevotees at one of India‟s most sacred hours. “The Shivlinga Ipilgrimage sites in Amarnath have had a long saw yesterday waswait ahead of the last day of darshan, August 13. smaller than the oneThis year has seen the highest number of shown in thedevotees visiting Amarnath, with nearly 600,000 photographs releasedpilgrims arriving for an annual pilgrimage to in the initial days of thethe cave shrine in less than a month. On top of yatra. But I think I‟mthat, pilgrims who reached late faced still lucky to catch adisappointment as the holy „Ice Lingam‟, the glimpse of it,” saidmost interesting phenomenon of the annual Durga Prasad Kaw, apilgrimage, was melting fast. pilgrim from Panipat.
  • Waiting listMovie goers in Karachi were recently introducedto 3D cinema at the Atrium Mall, which is locatednot in one of the elitist pockets of Karachi but inthe heart of the city. The Atrium Cinema waslaunched on December 31, 2010. Apart frombeing the first state-of-the-art 3D cinema inKarachi, the Atrium Cinema has elevated theexperience of going out to the movies in manyways. From the warm ambience to thesophisticated interiors to the delicious caramelpopcorn -- not to mention all the latest summer Other cinemas were quick to introduce 3D butblockbusters from Hollywood and Bollywood -- will require major overhaul in order to match thethe Atrium Cinema has taken the city by storm. class and prestige that the Atrium Cinema hasViewers have been queuing for tickets days in managed to achieve. Here‟s hoping that othersadvance. And getting seats for a weekend show – do equal the experience at Atrium Cinema,well, that‟s near impossible. because a little competition is always healthy.The annual World Cosplay Summit, held in Aichi prefecture, Japan, is the only event wherecosplay (or costume role-play) lovers from all over the world gather to showcase their hand-made costumes and compete for the best-dressed award. After the massive “Red Carpet”cosplay parade, there‟s a series of performances where celebrity judges vote to choose thecosplay champion.Despite the earthquake and fear of nuclear radiation, the number of participants in this year‟scosplay summit has hit a record high with over 17,000 cosplayers and cosplay fans from 17different countries.Finally, a Brazilian dressed as a character from“Final Fantasy 12” was chosen as winner. AnItalian came in second, dressed as an animecharacter from “Sugar Sugar Rune”, while aChinese participant geared up as a “DynastyWarriors 6” character placed third. A Japanesecontestant dressed as a Mario Brother came insixth.The cosplay community has become strikinglydiverse over the past few years. Competition isbecoming more heated as the number of foreigncosplayers increases and the judges demandhigher standards of creativity from the globalcosplay community.
  • Waiting listThe San Pallegrino world‟s 50 best restaurantsmight have named Iggy‟s and Gunther‟s the bestrestaurant in Singapore, but Andre‟s, a newartisan restaurant opened by Taiwanese nativeAndre Chiang, is steadily climbing the chart.The French fusion restaurant opened its doorslast October on Bukit Pasoh Road next toEmperor Hotel. They seat only 30 people at atime and serve a degustation menu based onAndre‟s “octa-philosophy” of eight differentcharacteristics.Each course is based on a single theme --Unique, Texture, Pure, Terroir, Salt, South orArtisan -- designed to tap into people‟s memorybanks and personal experiences to create amemorable dining experience.Locals rave about the food by Chef Andre onreview websites such as hungrygowhere.comand tripadvisor.com, calling it an “experiencethat softens the senses and opens the mind”.There is currently a two month waiting list for thedegustation menu at Andres.
  • Tense about …
  • Tense aboutOn July 24, 2011, a collision between two high-speed trains near the coastal city ofWenzhou, Zhejiang province, China, left at least 40 dead and 210 injured. The accidentoccurred when one train lost power after being struck by lightning, and another train hitit from behind, causing a derailment. Two carriages subsequently fell off a bridge.The accident unleashed a torrent of public criticism and raised doubts about Chinasbreakneck plans to expand high-speed rail across the country. On China‟s micro-blogging website Weibo.com, netizens have been questioning official explanations forthe cause of the accident as well as the earnestness of the rescue and recovery effortsthat followed. “If a train is stopped on the tracks, cant dispatchers be automaticallynotified? Is this accident due to irresponsible personnel or a design problem with thetrains?” they asked. In light of the Aquino administration‟s campaign to resolve corruption, and fraud cases left by the previous administration, Filipinos are experiencing a period of guarded optimism. They feel that justice will finally be served. The question now is, when? July‟s State of the Nation address roused those impatient for change, prompting questions on why the impact of reforms has still not been felt in particular sectors after a year in service. Filipinos believe that constructive criticism is an essential feature in improving the governance process in the Philippines. As incremental changes can only be recognized over time, it may seem like a long wait for many.
  • Tense about Food inflation in India zoomed to 9.9 per cent for There has been an across-the-board rise in the week ended July 30 as rains made prices during the week, with egg, meat and fish transportation across the country a challenge. rising the fastest, at nearly 6 per cent. Prices of The rate, the highest in over three months, made onions, potatoes, fruits, and cereals also rose it difficult for the Reserve Bank to stop raising during the week. Though inflation in food is interest rates despite global economic largely driven by rising input costs and supply uncertainty and deceleration in industrial constraints, the RBI has been worried that it growth. could cause a vicious wage-price spiral. “Inflation has been very volatile and right now monsoons have triggered additional transportation problems for food products. Perishables are mostly generating the price spikes now,” said Rupa Rege Nitsure, chief economist, Bank of Baroda.Sri Lankans are extremely passionate about their Despite this, a top official ordered that thevehicles. There are an estimated three million contaminated stock be released to filling stationspetrol vehicles in Sri Lanka, so when a petrol and, as a result, thousands of vehicles andscam hit the country recently, there were a lot of numerous pumps were damaged, requiringangry car-owners to contend with. extensive and expensive repairs. Aggrieved motorists were provided hotline numbers toAround 20,000 metric tons of low quality petrol lodge their complaints, but the numbers were(below the normal 90 octane standard) were mostly non-responsive. The petroleum ministryreleased on the market. It was further revealed also attempted to blame rain water for thethat this stock was tested at a laboratory before contamination, even though the nation had beenrelease and found unfit for use because there experiencing one of the driest spells in recentwere metal particles and other substances which times.could damage motor vehicles.
  • Tense aboutKarachi has long been the face Pakistan wished toshow to the world. The port city -- the sixth orseventh largest in the world, depending on whomyou ask, with a population of more than 18 million –once represented the ideal of what Pakistan oughtto have been. There are cities around the worldthat you just can‟t imagine leaving. No matter whatgoes down in the city, despite tension, havoc andchaos, you still say, “This is MY CITY, and I justcan‟t leave it.” Karachi was one of them. Yet the City of Lights, which is the source of 70 percent of Pakistan‟s revenue, is now plagued byintense violence, targeted killings and lawlessness.Karachi is bleeding like never before, with the cityturning into a battleground. This was once the city where shops would stayopen late, restaurants would be booming and trafficwould be crazy. But a lot has changed in the pastfew years. If you are a student, you now just want togo home as soon as you‟re done with school. Ifyou‟re working, you want the day to end as soon aspossible so you can catch a ride back home.The worst-affected areas in Karachi have been theQasba Colony and Orangi Town, where terroristsfired rockets, bombed houses and killed innocentcivilians. They looted homes, burnt cars andtorched shops. Firing all around the city hasresulted in many lives being lost.Yet we have hope that one day this all will end.Karachi is indeed a survivor‟s city, and we knowthat this violence doesnt define us.
  • Tense aboutLow scores in the recent university entrance There‟s a growing concern on the effects ofexams have raised concerns that nuclear radiation on Japan‟s food supply.Vietnamese students today do not have the Recently, many cows in Tokyonecessary knowledge of the country‟s slaughterhouses were found to be taintedhistory. Many students got low marks, while with almost 2,500 Becquerel per kilogram ofthousands of students got zero. This has radioactive cesium, which is 500 per centprompted discussion and debate on higher than Japan‟s permissible limit. Inwhether it is necessary to revamp current addition, dried green-tea leaves, harvestedcurriculums and teaching methods for in Shizuoka prefecture, were were found tohistory, or whether there is simply a lack of have levels of radioactive cesium above thecommitment towards and interest in permitted threshold.Vietnamese history. For the Japanese, food produced in JapanLimited career opportunities and lower has traditionally been considered more safesalaries for history graduates have also had and reliable than imported products. Butan impact on the subject‟s popularity, and now, things are different. There has been aeducators have recognized the need to surge in sales of New Zealand pork andmake the subject more relevant to every beef, and it seems inevitable that this is ageneration of Vietnamese student. trend that will continue in the time to come.
  • Everyone’s talking about …Campaigns & events generating buzz
  • Everyone’s talking aboutStrip surge in ManilaBench Lifestyle Clothing is one of the mostsuccessful Filipino-owned businesses tohave made it internationally. They havereceived endorsements from local andforeign celebrities, all of whom are proud tohave a Bench campaign in their portfolios.So it worked out well for the rugby teamPhilippine Volcanoes when they tied up withthe brand with the hope of making rugby amore popular sport in a country wherealmost every street has a basketball hoop.This is not the first time that the brand hasput up big billboards of almost-naked menon the main highway of Metro Manila. Thefirst such campaign prompted much talkabout propriety and it was only a matter oftime before this latest campaign receivedthe same attention – which must have beenexpected by the advertisers. Shockedconservatives called for the hugebillboards to be taken down – a great way ofgetting in the news!A calendar of the Philippine Volcanoesfeaturing similar, sexy shots sold out fast,with proceeds going to a rugby fund.
  • Everyone’s talking about Travel bugs in Vietnam Taiwan Excellence has partnered with the country‟s leading IT brands to launch IT Travellers GO across Vietnam, Indonesia and India. The regional campaign developed by Ogilvy One Vietnam encourages young dynamic consumers to showcase their IT lifestyle by uploading images and videos to gain public votes and support. Twelve contestants will be chosen to participate in a journey across each of the three countries using the Taiwanese IT partner products and will then have to blog about their experiences for a chance at the ultimate prize of US$20,000.Beer on the rocks in JapanIt‟s been a pretty hot summer in Japan this year, and ever since thenuclear meltdown in Fukushima, there‟s been increasing efforts touse less electricity, even in the face of the heat. So office workers,despite following the Cool Biz dress code, need a way to cooldown. That led Kirin Beer, one of the beer manufacturing giants ofJapan, to launch Ice Plus Beer, a new beer designed to be had withice!Although considered a no-no by beer aficionados, Kirin‟sunconventional Ice Plus Beer has caught on with Japaneseexecutives. Ice Plus Beer is specially designed to be poured overice, with a high concentration of flavor, aroma, and alcohol so that ittastes better than regular beer would when diluted with ice.
  • Everyone’s talking aboutPopulation control in India…The new Idea ad suggests that 3G technology isso entertaining that consumers are no longerhaving sex every time they are bored. Theresult? India‟s population problems arereversed!After a series of thought-provoking campaigns around themes of caste war, education forall, democracy, use of mobiles to save paper and language barrier, this time the muse ispopulation control. The ad shows that couples who had no entertainment apart from sexbefore the 3G days are now spending all their time having fun with their cellphones. Thead leaves viewers with the catchphrase No Baby, Only 3G. When Abhishek Bachchan‟sfriend asks him about his own baby (which is on the way in real life), Bachchansheepishly says that the deed was done before 3G! Watch the ad here:www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqtB-IaeEo8… and small screen weddings“Begaani shaadi mein abdulaah deewana” is a Hindi saying whichroughly translates to “getting enthusiastic about someone else‟swedding”. Not only does this happen in real life, it happens on thesmall screen also, with Indian telly audiences tuning in wheneverthere is a wedding on any popular TV show.The most recent wedding is notable for being quite unconventional.Ram Kapoor and Priya on Bade Achhe Laggte Hain, on SonyEntertainment Television, are interesting because they are quite oldcompared to most couples on Indian TV, and in India late marriageis still fairly unusual in most traditional families.This storyline has helped serial soap-maker Ekta Kapoor reclaim thesmall-screen queen crown, with everyone in a tizzy over this on-screen couple.
  • Everyone’s talking aboutThe lasting impression in Taiwan The Fun Pack Song in SingaporeThe 16-minute Taiwanese film My BeautifulIsland features four different life stories -- a In early June, mayhem erupted on Youtubeyoung American searching for a sense of around a video taken during the rehearsal ofbelonging, three young Japanese women Singapore‟s National Day Parade to celebratetraveling around the world to celebrate their the 46th year of independence on August 9 offriendship, a family with a rebellious teenager the multicultural melting pot.and an elderly couple planning a romanticholiday. The video featured the “Fun-Pack” song, an adaptation of Lady Gaga‟s Bad Romance. TheThe film is a departure from the usual modified lyrics referred to the “Goodie-bag”,promotional format and aims to stir peoples a pack that each spectator was to receive atemotions, said its director Johnason Lo. the Marina Bay stadium celebrations.Lo, who has won the international Promax, iF Within a week, there were over 50,000 viewsDesign and red-dot awards, said he tried to on Youtube. But Singaporeans were soonavoid the conventional tourism narrative that embarrassed by the silly and suggestivefocuses on scenic spots. "The most meaningful lyrics, and global viewers called it a “butcheryelement of a trip is the people who give tourists of Lady Gaga‟s creativity”.their most lasting memories," he said. The song was later removed from theThe film will be released on TV in San Francisco performance lineup as organizers did not havenext month and later in Japan, Korea, Singapore the rights for the Lady Gaga track. Whenand Hong Kong. It is part of a larger campaign asked about the song, Lady Gaga said she hadworth NT$100 million (US$3.4 million), which no comment.tourism bureau director-general Janice Laihopes will attract 500,000 tourists to in turngenerate revenue of US$770 million per year.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncU6_jG4P7Q
  • Everyone’s talking aboutThe Lynx Effect in China Through a wide range and varied digitally-driven campaign focused onLaunching a brand in China is hard, creating educating young male consumers on thea new product category is even harder. On brand and product, Lynx has generated aJune 10, 2011, Unilever officially launched it‟s great deal of buzz amongst the ChineseLynx brand in the Chinese market with a youth. Humorous viral videos chargedcampaign featuring controversial celebrity with sexual innuendo captured theEdison Chen, the star of 2008 scandal in imagination of thousands of youngwhich the youth idol‟s personal sex photos Chinese men and women, educating themwere released to the public. After the on how to use this new type of productscandal, Chinese took to calling Edison (body sprays and shower gels). Coupled„Professor Chen‟, thanks to his apparent with smart live activities – most of whichexpertise in sexuality and photography. were presided over by an army of scantily clad “Lynx Angles” – and a host of digitalIn Lynx‟s (also known as Axe) latest TV spot, platforms, the campaign went from zero toChen is cast as a laboratory researcher, over 100,000 unique new followers,uncovering the secret to make women flock commentators and viewers on Chineseto men like bees to honey. social networking sites in just three months. “I have always wished there was something like a Mating Bible to teach me how to get girls and solve my girl trouble. Coming from Edison Chen, this must work. The online videos are interesting as well,” said one follower on Lynx‟s page on micro-blogging website Weibo.com.
  • Everyone’s talking aboutRural smarts in Sri LankaCIC Agri is a leading name in the agricultural business in Sri Lanka. The company‟sproducts and services cover the entire gamut of the agricultural business – fromseed to shelf. Some of its flagship products are paddy seeds, fertilizers and tractors.To reinforce their leadership in the agri business, CIC recently launched a campaignled by three TVCs, each highlighting one of their lead offerings. For better culturalconnect with the target group (i.e. farmers), CIC drew upon Shailygatha – a musicaldramatic form popular with rural audience, similar to the jatra folk art of Bengal,India. With over-the-top characterization and humorous content, this campaign notonly stands out amongst the current message clutter but has also generated chatteramong urban audiences. Click hereto watch the ads: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXpZxn3NQA4&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02rnwVIR1oE&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jzBO1MZo1Q&feature=related
  • A peek at some unique or popular offerings on the Web
  • Online shoppinghttp://www.clickthecity.com/hot-off-the- Savvy Vietnamese shoppers can now loginpress/?p=12045 at http://muachung.vn, one of the first Groupon sites to take Vietnam‟s onlineMultiply, which started out as a social market by storm. The group coupon websitenetworking site, has evolved into a digital offers one “Groupon” per day. If a certainshopping portal, thanks to entrepreneurial number of people sign up for the offer, thenFilipinos who utilized the site‟s popular the deal becomes available to all. However,Photo Album feature to showcase products if the predetermined minimum is not met,and wares. Taking its cue from this growing no one gets the deal that day.trend, Multiply harnessed the opportunity torework the site with a fully-functioning e- As an exciting new channel for Vietnamesecommerce platform to ensure a safe and consumers to not only search but accesshassle-free digital shopping experience for new products and services, Muachung.vn isits users at clickthecity.com. only increasing in popularity and is getting much positive feedback from consumers.  17 product categories  88,000 stores and growing  24/7 store hours  Easy-to-follow and secure payment process through BDO Virtual Card, BPI, Paypal and G- Cash Buyer Protection Program
  • Online shoppingLaunched as the first global import agent and online shopping mall in Korea in 2001,Wizwid deals in trendy products at reasonable prices. It differentiates itself from otheronline shopping portals through its brand sourcing strategy and collaborative fashionprojects under its [W Concept].To provide users a convenient global shopping experience, Wizwid acts as a purchaseagent, bringing up-to-date fashions from famous and less known contemporary brands toKorea. The collaborative collections with promising Korean designers also helped build thesite‟s image as a premium shopping mall. The [W Concept] has brought unique lines fromdesigners such as Doo ri, Jain Song, Choi Jung In, ANDY & DEBB, Suecomma bonnie, Jardinde Chouette and Seun to online consumers in Korea. WIZWID‟s path has been quite distinct from other online fashion sites. Cheaper than offlinemalls, its selective brand souring strategy and exclusive designer lines have not been easyto copy.
  • Online shoppingFashionAndYou.com and DealsAndYou.com arethe pioneers of flash sales in India. These onlinesales offer powerful alternate marketing andsales vehicles to brands searching for a novelapproachFashion and You has witnessed over 35 per centgrowth month on month, charted by social anddigital word of mouth marketing. Interestingly35-40 per cent of their active members are innon-metros and smaller towns. “We startedFashion and You with the aim of providing China‟s largest online apparel retailerpremium quality products to our members VANCL.com was created in 2007 byacross the country,” said Pearl Uppal, CEO and Chinese e-commerce entrepreneur Chenco-founder, Fashion and You. “In the very first Nian, also known for founding Joyo whichyear we became the number one shopping club was later sold to Amazon. In three years,and the number one online fashion retail VANCL has captured 28.4 percent of thecompany in India.” online B2C garment sales in China and has become one of the most popular onlineIn 2010, Lakme Fashion Week became the firstfashion week in Asia to embrace e-commerce to shopping destinations for the youth.drive the business of fashion. Fashion and You, In the past few years VANCL has grownits official online partner, is mentioned on theLFW website as India‟s largest private shopping rapidly, maximizing the opportunityclub, now accessed by over 1.2 million high net- presented by China‟s online clothes market.worth members, working with over 450 luxury, The company’s sales in 2008 reached about RMB300 million and doubled in 2009.high fashion and designer brands. This year, VANCL expects sales to touch RMB20 billion and is looking at a Nasdaq listing. They key factor behind VANCLs success appears to be the tremendous amount of online advertising it leverages to target young urban Chinese aged 18 to 28 years. Its stylish clothing at affordable prices are made by famous designers from Europe and America who tailor the garments to suit the Asian market, a model which has proved very popular with the Chinese consumer.
  • Online shoppingTaiwans online Uniqlo store is doing so well that it is posing a threat to retailers with 200 storeson the streets. In four years, Lativ, founded by Chang Wei-chiang, has seen its revenue growfrom NT$10 million to an estimated NT$1.5 billion this year.When Chang decided to go into business, he noticed that most online clothing stores wereselling trendy, fancy and cheap clothes that were of poor quality. He set about learning thebasics of the clothing business, studying fabrics, patterns and cut. After only a year in business,Chang sold 600,000 polo shirts at a price of NT$168 each.High quality has helped build trust among customers and now 80 per cent of Lativs 250,000members are repeat buyers. The product lines have also expanded to include children‟s wearand underwear. This group is in regular touch with family and friends back home, and this is Kapruka‟s main target market. The site started out as a means for expats to send gifts to loved ones in Sri Lanka, expanding its network by buying gift shops across the country to deliver to any doorstep in Sri Lanka. Kapruka now has offices in UK and USA as well as Sri Lanka and provides over 5,000 gift products for its customers, ranging from flowers to restaurant foods. It has become popular among Sri Lankans living outside the country wishing to send surprise gifts for birthdays and Sri Lanka is still in its digital infancy. other occasions. However, growth signs are extremely positive with Facebook just passing the one The unique approach to business and offline million-user mark, and e-commerce product development are key factors behind the becoming more popular. But even so, success of Kapruka as a leading e-commerce Kapruka.com‟s business model depends business in Sri Lanka. largely on Sri Lanka‟s large expat community of over two million people.
  • For more information, to request a presentation oncultural insights, or to contribute your perspectivesin your market, please write to:kunal.sinha@ogilvy.com