What’s in IT for me?

I have a lot of friends in IT.
They have a single friend they lost out to advertising.

Over the years, we’ve lost touch. And when we meet, we don’t know what to speak. While, that may the difference of ‘Information’ and ‘Communication’.

They would like me to just inform them about what I’m doing.
I would like to communicate to them what I’m doing.

Click on an IT guy’s profile on Facebook. You’ll only find people he has lost touch with.
Click on an Advertising guy’s profile on Facebook. You’ll find people he’d like to be in touch with.

They are on Facebook, coz they have no time to waste.
We are on Facebook, coz we want to waste time.

Our Facebook friends list totals up the number of guys we know in the universe.
Their Facebook friends list totals up the number of people they’ve not been in touch with.

That’s only my starting point of differences. The rest is a mindless rambling of my thoughts of our universe v/s theirs. There is no constructive conclusion to this post. It’s just me typing away any garbage thats on my mind right now. No argument. No flow. No nothing. Just meandering with my thoughts without Ctrl z.

OK. It was about the IT dudes. They atleast make taller and greater claims only in their annual reports to cover up.
We are employed to do that on a daily basis in every ad.
They do it financially. We do it creatively.
Guys from overseas pay them. Guys who oversee pay us.

They get paid to debug. We get paid to bug.

In bad times they get laid off, we get laid. They are expected to only simplify complicated matters. Here we are expected to do both, first complicate it before simplifying it.

It’s easy, ask a software dude what he does and he’ll try and simplify the explanation.

Layman: ‘What do you do?’
Software dude: ‘Well, have you ever booked a ticket online?’
Layman: ‘yes’
Software dude: ‘Ok, we make programs that enable it.’
Layman: ‘wow!!’

On the other hand

Layman: “What do you do?’
Ad man: ‘I create touchpoints where a consumer can interact and have a dialogue with a brand’
Layman: ‘What do you do?’
Ad man: ‘We decide if Lux should be a man or a woman.’
Layman: “So, what do you do?’
Ad man: ‘We ladder up brand offerings to emotional spaces’
Layman: ‘Do you make ads?’
Ad man: “We dont make ads. We create brand personalities. We convert inanimate objects and intangible services to human beings.”
Layman: “Uhh!! Looks my drink is over. I’ll be right back.”

The problem is everyone knows advertising, so we try and make it larger than what it is.

The problem is nobody knows programming, so they try and make it seem smaller than what it is.

They die to bring it to a familiar space. We try and take it to an unfamiliar zone.

They have the money. We have the plans.

Check out pics of software dudes who go on foreign trips.
“My seattle office.”
“The park in the Microsoft campus’
“Tandoor. Yummy Indian food. Reminds me of my days in India. Swear by its tandoor chicken.’
“Bob. The funniest programmer I’ve met.”
“Ayesha, Tania and Mark. You guys rock.”
“Ayesha. Mark and Me. Pic by Tania.”
“Chang. Loved the Dimsums. Make me more.”
“Ripleys museum. Yipeeeee”

And pics of advtg flunks on a trip to Goa, Pondi, Hampi or Rajasthan.
A fakir blowing a chillum.
A stray dog in a garbage dump.
A crow.
A balloonwala.
Four kids struck by poverty.
And other macro shots if the scene around is boring.

We try and find something interesting in the boring life we lead.
They find something boring in the interesting life they lead.

Maybe because they know that they’ll be back there.
We doubt if we’ll be back there again.

Their work begins with logic.

Our work ends when we’ve found common sense….like make the logo bigger, it wont be visible on a hoarding.

Everybody screams over a cup of by two coffee ‘Don’t you have common sense?’.
But Logic is something that’s shared over a sophisticated drink.

Any day, Logic sounds so much cooler.

They find a creative way of making tickets accessibe on the net and call it logical solutions.
We find a logical reason for somebody to buy paint and call it creative solutions.

If we want to travel abroad, we need to write a film that opens there. If they want to travel abroad, all they need to do is fuck up somewhere.

They chose to study harder in school. We just postponed the agony to now.

Their companies have vague names. We have vaguer ones.

They like x,z and soft, tech, info, digi and next.
We like a,b,c and happy and orange and juice.

They have fancy numbers to back them.
All we have is that damn key number.

They are dying for everyone to know what they do.
And we hope and pray that nobody knows what we do.

While we were busy answering the question ‘What’s in it for me?’ on behalf of the lakhs of people who consume brands, some guys asked that question for themselves. “What’s in IT for me?’.

Smart chaps.

This post will be removed the minute I get sober.

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17 Comments

  1. Ouch.poor results on ROI or was it just drunken banter? Interesting.

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  2. fantastic fantastic post rajesh! loved every sentence (wanted to say every insight, but was intimidated by your point about complicating simple matters)…

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  3. AWESOME……..

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  4. As a graphic designer married to an engineer, this post brought it home for me!

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  5. This came out of drunkenness? 🙂 waww!
    I loved:
    Their work begins with logic. Our work ends when we’ve found common sense.

    Nothing makes me more uncomfortable than being asked “So what do you do?” Coz first I have to explain the weird acronym of my company, then explain what the company does. To which the usual response is, “Oh, ok ok so you write slogans!” Then I try and complicate this simple unfair deduction. Then I beef it up even more by explaining the departments, and nicely fluff it up by telling him about my crucial role. All this only to leave the guy completely suspicious, and me wondering whether I am gainfully employed at all 🙂

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  6. Also, I think technocoolies are in IT by choice. We landed up here by chance – we didn’t know what else to do hehehe.

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  7. tks ashwini, thanks guru, thanks mala, thanks vyshnavi. and ya…ive faced that problem a hundred times. And I have no clue what to say when someone asks ‘what do you do?’ Atleast you can spend some time expanding that acronym…..and get some thinking time in that process.
    and mr raj iyengar…..i havent understood if you liked it or not.

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  8. 50:50:) (me sitting on the fence for now)All comments reserved and opinions will be presented when I call you on the 17th. For now, “Advertising is the art of making whole lies out of half truths.” – Edgar E.S

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  9. That is a very insightful, funny and well-written piece. And to be honest I don’t know many IT types who are able to being out their creative side. I don’t even ask ‘what do you do’ of many of them because I prefer asking the media-types and having a conversation that I can ‘get’. And I thought it intriguing that you think engineers try to find boredom in their interesting lives while the creative people do vice-versa. I don’t think I completely agree with that… to each their own though 🙂

    Glad to have dropped by!

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  10. thanks miss dewdrop
    Quite a nice blogname. what i meant was that engineers get to go to swiss, japan, US, norway, turkey, china and god knows where else. the left over places, they can anyhow cover with the kind of money they earn…..that was what i meant, that they search for boredom in their interesting lives. Send an ad guy to Morocco and an IT guy to morocco and you’ll know the difference.

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  11. Thank you! Yes I now see what you mean. It so happens that I’m the only photography-buff and shutterbug among one particular set of friends here and it’s beyond funny sometimes how they keep asking me to take their photos at various locations… or worse, “WHY do you keep snapping random people?! Because it’s bloody ART, that’s why! Although if one needs to ask then perhaps they don’t need to know the answer 🙂

    Blogrolling you!

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  12. IT guys make life in US totally unromantic, dull, prosaic, bcoz they dont bother to mingle with locals, still see only Indian movies and play cricket , except for those who have been in US for more than 10 yrs.
    i had the same experience once with teachers — i was thrilled to get a teaching job in Tanzania, but my colleauges shunned locals, had no interest in wildlife or the Serengeti, were unbelievably dull. but we have very exciting teachers in the KFI schools, they luv wildlife, hiking, they can do thrilling things in India itself !!
    some IT ppl i knew in Chennai once went for thrilling adventure activities some where near Chennai .

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  13. thanks ramachandran. and I have a set of friends in IT who could defy everything written about them there. But im not taking exceptions into consideration.
    Ya what you say seems true by and large. Its important that you mingle with the locals, and not stick to what you came with. But I guess there must be a whole lot of interesting people out there who are far more open minded. …
    You seem to have had an interesting life.

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  14. Thanks a lot, Donraja !! and the blogosphere is a gr8 place to find interesting ppl.

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  15. machane.. kickass!!! i didn’t like it. just loved every sentence of it! sooooper guro!!

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  16. Ive been reading your blogs since yesterday and this is the best one yet on the philsophical front.

    PS: Im the IT guy who was pushed into this field by the demanding-parent, but still yearns to do justice to his creative and wild side.

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  17. very intrestin…i loved it

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