Ever since Star Group bought out ESPN’s stake in the Star Group-ESPN joint venture, everything has been collated into Star Sports with six different channels – Star Sports 1, 2, 3, 4, HD-1 and HD-2 plus the online site: starsports.com. While such rebranding entails a new logo and an evolved brand philosophy, it cannot go far without a good backing of content. Some angry football fans in this country have accused the new Star Sports for airing only cricket, cricket and more cricket.
Armed with ‘Believe’ as the brand’s new philosophy and the Indian cricket team’s captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni as the brand ambassador, Star Sports seems to be keen on catering to the largely cricket-worshipping nation. Only one of the four standard definition channels show sports other than cricket. A football buff has to shell out more to watch his favourite league matches either on HD channels or take the online subscription at starsports.com.
Understandably, these football fans have joined forces to form ‘Star Not Sports’ by the Twitter handle @StarSportsIndia which looks exactly similar to the official Star Sports handle, except that the ‘I’ of India is actually the lowercase letter ‘L’. The Bio now says: “The world’s worst TV provider. We love Football, but only in HD. This is a Parody” following a slight modification that dropped an abusive word.
It was only after the parody account received a warning by Twitter to change its account name and avatar within 48 hours as it violated Twitter’s parody account policy, followers saw a change in both logo and account name. From its earlier 90 odd fans, the parody account has now grown a following of 600+. Also, instead of the Star Sports website on its bio, the account now links to a Facebook community page of the same name ‘Star not Sports’ with 5 fans. Interestingly, here they describe themselves as ‘A fast growing community of free South Asian People who are trying to fight against a crime that’s being committed in broad daylight’.
Whether you’re a fan or not of football, the parody account provides amusement to all with its stream of witty tweets taking a jibe at Star Sports and its alleged affinity to cricket. Savour a few tweets:
Parody accounts of politicians have always provided much amusement but this is probably a first in the country when television audiences get together and fight against a channel because it does not cater to their needs. On a positive side, Star Sports can catch the pulse of its viewers through this parody account and revise its programming schedule and content.
The original post was published here.
(c) Lighthouse Insights 2013