Global acclaim for inspiring South African whisky commercial

first_imgA still from the TV commercial The Reader. (Image: Bell’s Whisky) • So this giraffe walks into a restaurant … and the video goes viral • Across the Colour Bar: Nthabiseng’s story • Watch: Global video reactions to Nelson Mandela’s death • Buy Back South Africa, save and create jobsMary AlexanderA new South African TV ad for Bell’s Whisky that tells the story of an old man learning to read has won kudos from the international media as “more heartwarming than most Super Bowl commercials”, “the most inspiring ad of the new year”, and “the best commercial for literacy (and scotch) ever made”.The video, thought up by Cape Town-based agency King James and directed by Greg Gray of Velocity Films, launched on South African television channels on Sunday 2 February – the day before the US Super Bowl, whose commercial breaks are the global prime-time for ad space.Called The Reader, the moving commercial uses light, soft touches to mark the greying man’s journey to literacy – games of Scrabble with friends, flirty messages to his wife using alphabet soup, sticky notes all over everyday household items.The reason for his mission to learn to read is only uncovered at the end of the ad, and best revealed by watching it: “In The Reader we strove to create a storyline that would engage and inspire South Africans across the board,” says Devin Kennedy, executive creative director at King James. “The commercial celebrates universal themes such as friendship, family and community as well as the extra special things we do for each other.”In less than a week The Reader has already grabbed the attention of the international advertising industry, and garnered nearly half a million YouTube views.“This whisky ad from South Africa is more heartwarming than most of the Super Bowl commercials,” wrote David Gianatasio in Adweek, the prestigious New York-based ad industry publication. “Scotch whisky brand Bell’s and ad agency King James might just lift your spirits with this South African ad with an elderly man struggling to overcome his illiteracy so he can celebrate a family milestone.“Director Greg Gray of Velocity Films employs a restrained cinematic style to show The Reader diligently practicing his A-B-Cs at every opportunity … the heartfelt acting and storytelling are strong enough to yield a potent emotional payoff.”Business Insider said it was “by our estimation, the most inspiring ad of the new year”.“Slowly but surely, the man’s reading improves, and the ad delivers its extraordinary emotional payoff — right as the music hits its stirring crescendo.”Buzzfeed staff writer Isaac Fitzgerald described it as “the best commercial for literacy (and scotch) ever made”: “It’s a rare commercial that brings tears to your eyes, but the folks at Bell’s Whisky South Africa have done just that. Hugs and gold stars all around.”last_img read more

So You’ve Launched, Now What?

first_imgaudrey watters Tags:#start#tips Related Posts After months of hard work, designing and building your product, you launch. You’ve sent out press releases, and you’re all prepared for “go.” And then…Sometimes things simply fall into place. There’s tons of buzz. You pick up customers rapidly. And sometimes things sort of go nowhere.That was the experience of time-tracking software startup Chrometa, who recently described its experience with a launch that, in its own words, “flopped.” In a blog post, the startup goes on to address the question: “You launched your app, now what?”Chrometa chronicles its progress post-launch. Chrometa 1.1 launches in March of 2009 but “nobody cares.” In June, the startup gets coverage in Technolawyer, the “perfect advertising medium” for a software company that aimed at solving the time-tracking and billing needs of attorneys. The company picked up a few subscribers from the initial write-up, and quite a few more when Chrometa 2.0 was covered by Technolawyer in August. Although the company had amassed about 50 paid subscribers, “we soon hit a bit of a lull after the initial buzz wore off. So we tried to figure out: How can we keep excitement going for a product that’s very well received by customers, but is not inherently viral itself?”The challenge for Chrometa was to maintain momentum, to continue to develop sales and adoption. To do so, Chrometa called each customer who bought the product, reached out to legal industry publications, and continued to work on upgrades to the product. “Continued product improvement was THE most important thing we did over this time period.”The “lessons learned,” according to Chrometa, were:Focus on one, and only one, initial market.Don’t get discouraged. “As long as your customers are paying for your product – and they are happy with it after their purchase – you are doing fine. That means the fundamentals of your situation are good. And you just need to go find more customers – and that is very doable (easier said than done, but doable!)”Buzz and press coverage won’t necessarily make your business.Chrometa’s experiences demonstrate some of the things startups should keep in mind post-launch. “Launch” does not mean “done,” so it’s important to budget for further development. If you’re giving away a free trial, it may be a while before you have paying customers. But nonetheless, as Chrometa found, these early users can provide great insights into what works and what doesn’t work. Using the analytics gleaned from them, continue to work on design. As Chrometa shows, at the early stages of a startup, it’s necessary to work hard for every user, but that attention to the customer will help you build a better product. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…last_img read more

Punjab Police secures extradition of gangster Budda

first_imgWanted gangster Sukhpreet Singh Dhaliwal, alias Budda, is being deported from Armenia and will be arrested by the state police upon his arrival at the international airport in Delhi, Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta said here on Friday. He said in a breakthrough in the campaign against gangsters, the Punjab Police was all set to arrest Budda from the Delhi airport around Friday midnight after successfully securing his deportation from Armenia.“Budda is scheduled to land around midnight at the Delhi international airport. He will be taken into custody by a Punjab Police team,” Gupta said in a statement. Buddha, the self-styled chief of the Davinder Bambiha gang, was facing charges in over 15 cases of murder, attempt to murder and extortion, he said, adding that the gangster had recently come to notice for his contacts with pro-Khalistan elements.“Budda was convicted in a murder case of 2011, but had jumped parole in 2016 and was declared a proclaimed Offender,” the DGP added. Budda, a resident of Nihal Singh Wala in Moga, had fled the country in the wake of the crackdown against gangsters by the state government.“The Punjab Police continued to zealously pursue him but narrowly missed nabbing him in the UAE. Eventually, he was tracked down in Armenia following which the Punjab Police got a look-out circular and red corner notice issued from the Interpol,” Gupta said.“A precisely executed operation led to the apprehension of Budda by the Armenian Police on August 8, 2019, the officer said.“Soon thereafter, a few pro-Khalistan activists in Europe had posted an update on Facebook about Budda’s arrest calling him a strong voice for Khalistan in Punjab. In fact, Budda had earlier claimed responsibility on his Facebook account for the elimination of Maninder Pal Bittu, an activist of the Dera Sacha Sauda who was murdered inside Nabha Jail,” he said. The DGP said that after being tracked down in Armenia, a special Punjab Police team under Harkamalpreet Singh Khakh, AIG, Counter Intelligence, Jalandhar; and Bikram Brar, DSP, Organised Crime Control Unit, was deputed for coordinating the deportation of the criminal. The gangster was actively involved in extortion business in Punjab and had gained notoriety as one of the most feared and dreaded criminals of the state after the death of gangster Vicky Gounder, the DGP said.“He was the main kingpin of the attack on Punjabi singer-actor Parmish Verma in April 2018,” he said, adding Budda was also allegedly behind threats to other famous Punjabi singers and actors.“A well-known Punjabi singer Karan Aujla was also attacked in Canada on the directions of Budda,” he said. The case in which he was arrested and jumped parole related to the murder of one Jugraj Singh Rajja in 2011.last_img read more

Whos Likely To Win The Five Big European Soccer Leagues

Arsenal719 Man. City544 Chelsea has opened up a seven-point lead on its Premier League rivals, and is threatening to run away with the title. Our ratings don’t consider the Blues to be significantly stronger than the other teams at the top of the table: We narrowly rate their defense as the league’s best, but their offense as just the third-best behind Arsenal’s and Liverpool’s. But even though Chelsea isn’t necessarily the best team in the league, seven points is a large margin with 17 games to play; we give Chelsea a 62 percent chance of taking the title. If our forecasted standings hold, both Manchester United and Manchester City will be left out of the top four for the first time in Premier League history. Chelsea96%62% Barcelona43%25% TEAMMAKING CHAMP. LG.WINNING PREMIER LG. CHANCE OF … Eintracht34<1 The group stage of the Champions League is behind us, with relatively few surprises. Tottenham and Dynamo Kiev probably were the two best teams eliminated: They had a 68 percent and 58 percent chance of advancing, respectively. AS Monaco and Benfica advanced in their stead.The knockout stage begins on February 14. Barcelona, which faces Paris Saint-Germain in the Round of 16, remains the favorite to win the title at 25 percent. Bayern, Real and Juventus are close behind. We give the other 12 teams just a 37 percent chance of winning, combined. Leicester City’s magic carried the club through the group stage, but its poor Premier League play has lowered its ratings. We give Leicester just a 29 percent chance of advancing past Sevilla to the quarterfinals, and a 1 percent chance of making the final.Check out our latest soccer predictions. Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of qualifying for Champions League Sevilla823 Tottenham709 Real Madrid2312 Who will win the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A, Ligue 1 and the Champions League? See our predictions » TEAMMAKING CHAMP. LG.WinningLa Liga Man. United29<1 Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of reaching the Champions League final Since FiveThirtyEight relaunched with ESPN, we’ve created predictions for the NFL, NBA, MLB, NWSL, the men’s and women’s World Cup, college football, college basketball and tennis. Now we’re adding another set for the world’s most popular sport. Introducing: Club soccer predictions!Our new ratings — which are a revamped version of the ESPN Soccer Power Index (SPI) of national teams, adapted to the club game — use in-game player and ball-location data to assess the quality of shots and opportunities that teams generate. This gives us a better picture of performance than can be gleaned from game outcomes alone; you can read more in our full methodology here. Based on each team’s performance we calculate an offensive and defensive rating, which are used to predict the outcome of matches over the rest of the season.Right now, our predictions cover Europe’s five strongest club leagues — England’s Premier League, Spain’s La Liga, Germany’s Bundesliga, Italy’s Serie A and France’s Ligue 1 — and the Champions League. Our prediction pages are available in English and Spanish. Here’s how each league stands.Premier League TEAMMAKING FINALWINNING CHAMP. LG. Atletico Madrid68<1 Lazio222 Roma7823 Real Madrid>99%49% Bayer17<1 CHANCE OF … Arsenal105 Dortmund146 On the other side of the table, 2015-16 Cinderella Leicester City has fallen hard. While at the start of the season we projected the Foxes to finish ninth, they currently sit in 15th place, and we give them a 12 percent chance of being relegated. Swansea City, which skyrocketed from the fourth tier to the Premier League between 2005 and 2011, has a 61 percent chance of relegation.La Liga TEAMMAKING CHAMP. LG.WINNING LIGUE 1 Hertha Berlin32<1 Hoffenheim27<1 FC Cologne14<1 RB Leipzig836 AC Milan11<1 Bayern is in the driver’s seat here, seeking its fifth-straight Bundesliga title. RB Leipzig — which played in Germany’s second division last season but isn’t exactly a heartwarming underdog — is only three points behind in the table. Our ratings consider RB to be a much inferior team to Bayern, though, and goal differential agrees. We peg Dortmund as the second-best offense and fourth-best defense in the league, but an ugly 7-win, 6-draw, 3-loss start has the club in sixth place, with too much ground to make up.The battle for Champions League qualification is a bit more exciting. Bayern is a lock and we expect RB and Dortmund to qualify as well, but the league’s fourth spot is wide open. Hoffenheim — which narrowly avoided relegation last season — has a 27 percent chance of completing an impressive turnaround by finishing in the top four.Serie A Paris Saint-Germain entered the 2016-17 season as a heavy favorite to win its fifth-straight league title, with our preseason projections giving PSG a 91 percent chance against its relatively weak opposition. Twenty matches in, PSG sits at third in the table with 42 points, three behind Nice and Monaco. We have ourselves a race!We expect the title battle to come down to PSG and Monaco, which are now closely matched in our ratings (with Nice considerably lower). Fourth-place Lyon has only 34 points in 19 games, but it’s also much stronger than Nice and we expect the two clubs to closely contest the league’s third Champions League spot.Champions League Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of qualifying for Champions League Bayern Munich>99%91% Liverpool7915 Napoli6413 Atalanta7<1 Dortmund803 Inter Milan211 Barcelona>9946 Italy’s club season also started with a clear favorite, as Juventus sought its sixth-straight title. The club currently holds a one-point lead with a game in hand, and we rate Juve’s defense as the best in Serie A. AS Roma and Napoli have slightly stronger offenses and a combined 36 percent chance of winning the league. Those three teams are the favorites to take the league’s three Champions League spots as well, with Lazio and both Milan clubs capable of making spoiler runs.Ligue 1 Monaco9748 CHANCE OF … CHANCE OF … PSG97%48% Sevilla94 Lyon512 Nice471 Real Madrid recently saw its 40-game unbeaten streak come to an end, but the club still holds a one-point lead in La Liga with a game in hand. Our ratings still consider third-place Barcelona to be the stronger team on both sides of the ball, which makes Real’s offense merely the second-best in the world. This leaves us with a neck-and-neck race for the league title, with a pivotal matchup between the two clubs looming in Madrid on April 23.Sevilla sits in second place, but we don’t expect the club to finish in first. Its goal differential is nearly half that of Real and Barcelona, and we rate Sevilla’s offense as about a goal per game worse than the other two teams’. Nevertheless, Sevilla is in good position to qualify for the Champions League by finishing in the top four in La Liga, after having qualified as the Europa League champion in each of the last two seasons.Bundesliga CHANCE OF … TEAMMAKING CHAMP. LG.WINNING SERIE A Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of qualifying for Champions League Juventus93%60% Villarreal22<1 CHANCE OF … Juventus2110 Man. City146 Real Sociedad18<1 Napoli84 TEAMMAKING CHAMP. LG.WINNING BUNDESLIGA Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of qualifying for Champions League Bayern Munich2816 Teams with a greater than 5 percent chance of qualifying for Champions League Atletico Madrid125 read more

Louisville sluggers Cardinals pour on runs early hold off Buckeyes late

One day after being shut out by the Louisville Cardinals, the Ohio State baseball team was left wondering where its bats have been.The explosive hitting returned Wednesday for the Buckeyes, though they lost their second-straight game to the Cardinals (38-7, 14-4 in the Big East), 10-8, as throwing errors once again cost OSU (24-17, 8-7 in the Big Ten).Louisville third baseman Phil Wunderlich hit his 18th home run of the season, a solo shot in the top of the fourth inning off of OSU pitcher Brett McKinney to take a 9-5 lead.OSU catcher Dan Burkhart, who hit 5-for-5 on the afternoon, had an RBI single in the sixth inning, and center fielder Michael Stephens added another RBI single later in the inning to cut the deficit to 9-7.The Buckeyes closed the deficit to 9-8 after right fielder Brian DeLucia scored on a double play.In the eighth inning, Louisville shortstop Adam Duvall added an insurance run to push the final score to 10-8, singling home center fielder Drew Haynes who reached base on a throwing error.“I liked the way we competed a little bit,” OSU coach Bob Todd said. “But we dug ourselves in too deep a hole.”The error was OSU’s third of the game, which has been an Achilles’ heel for the team during a 3-8 stretch.Despite allowing eight runs in the first three innings, the Buckeyes responded with a Burkhart solo home run in the first, two runs in the second and two more off of an RBI double from shortstop Cory Rupert in the third to stay within reach at 8-5.“It was a good feeling to finally get a zero off the stats,” said Burkhart, who hit his first home run of the season Wednesday.Both starters, OSU’s Eric Shinn and Louisville’s Bob Revesz, failed to pitch more than two innings, as the teams combined for 10 runs in the first two frames.McKinney went three innings, giving up only the one home run to the Cardinals.DeLucia suffered a pinky finger injury in the seventh inning after being hit by a pitch.“Right now, it’s just a bruise” DeLucia said. “But I will know more tomorrow.”After only registering five hits in Tuesday night’s 6-0 loss, the Buckeyes pounded out eight runs and 14 hits on the afternoon.“Putting up eight runs should give our hitters confidence for the weekend series against Illinois,” Burkhart said.With the win, Louisville coach Dan McDonnell has won five straight contests against OSU in his three years as coach of the Cardinals.“They’re in the top 10 for a reason,” Todd said.OSU will host a three-game series against conference foe Illinois at Bill Davis Stadium beginning at 6:35 p.m. Friday. read more

Intrepid Australians are skipping Christmas down under

first_imgIntrepid Travel IndiaIntrepid Australians are skipping Christmas down underAustralians are shunning the stay-at-home festive season in favour of an overseas holiday at Christmas time, Intrepid Travel has revealed.To cater for the end of year exodus, Intrepid Travel has more than doubled its family trips with 40 Christmas holidays departing between 20 and 27 December 2018, up from 16 last year.“Australian travellers are increasingly choosing to leave the festive fuss behind. So pick a place, pass us one buck and we will take care of all the details,” Intrepid Travel regional director APAC Brett Mitchell said.Festive family itineraries are on offer to 12 destinations from Iceland to India and Costa Rica to Cambodia. Vietnam is the ‘it’ destination to date however, with Vietnam Family Holiday, Vietnam Family Holiday with Comfort and Vietnam Family Holiday with teenagers the three most popular Intrepid family itineraries.Families aren’t the only ones leaving home for the festive season with solo travel proving popular at this time of year. Lone travellers are making moves on Sri Lanka this Christmas with best-selling itineraries including Circle Sri Lanka and Cycle Sri Lanka.Rounding out the top five solo trips over Christmas are the Best of Cuba tour, the Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure and a Northern India itinerary.The Russian expedition is a wild card entry for this time of year, and indicates Australian travellers are keen to experience a white Christmas with a difference.To make it easier for travellers to commit to an overseas break this Christmas, Intrepid is currently offering a $1 deposit deal on trips.On sale from 15 August to 30 September 2018, travellers can secure their place on any Intrepid small group adventure or short break for just one dollar.For more information or to book visit or call 1300 061 695. *Standard booking conditions as per the website There are some tour exclusions and all tours are subject to availability. Prices, itineraries and inclusions are subject to change without notice. The remainder of the deposit balance is to be paid in full by 16 November 2018 and full payment is required 56 days prior to departure.Source = Intrepid Travellast_img read more