The Curious Case of Aziz Ansari

Image Courtesy: Rob Latour/REX/Shutterstock
Aziz Ansari, 34, was alleged by a 23-year-old anonymous woman of sexual assault in a feature publisehd in on January 13, 2018.

Aziz Ansari, the funny, brown skinned, Muslim Man on Netflix, does not look like an ogre and by all accounts is an affable man.Now, I am not validating him with a clean character certificate, but the thumb rule of common sense says that if someone feels bad about a sexual advance, he/she should nip at the bud at the very onset. Ansari who have been accused of molestation charges by the victim using her pseudo name on the feminist website Babe, seems to have been trapped between the fine line between seduction and molestation.

As per the reports in the feminist website Babe, the girl went to Aziz’s apartment, had wine, and appreciated the knick-knacks of the kitchen, before she was drawn into things which were not to her liking. Reportedly, such action happened more than once in course of the encounter with Ansari, before the girl reacted that such experiences were not appreciable. Later on, Aziz texted back and apologized. A few days later, it’s all over on social media with feminazi brigade in full fervour denouncing Ansari and his shows.

Now there’s the catch, the girl talks about how Ansari ignored her non-verbal cues and went on with his approach. So, now comes the vexing issues-Was Ansari supposed to be mind –reader? Shouldn’t be the girl straightforward in her reply in the very first instant when she felt uncomfortable? Or is it simply a case of Bad Sex, now camoflaogued as molestation, further spiced and served across media-well just because the protagonist is a celebrity and also some of us want to extend the =Me too Campaign to a longer extent.

In general, such activism have confused men. A recent poll by The New Yorker stated that now more men are cautious about approaching women via inviting them for drinks and other social activities. Adding to the woes, there is no social script which defines flirting and molestation in modern times. And we move on to further complex questions-Should a man at once understand a woman’s non-verbal cues? Can a man (always) understand a woman’s non-verbal cues? What is the standard parameter of non-verbal cues? Yes. Yes and No.Nobody knows till now are the most pragmatic answers for the questions.

Now, it is perfectly sane to label Harvey Weinstein as a monster, who arm twisted women to his wishes, on the account of his dominant position in the industry, and the fact that his actions were repetitive and forced. But, here we are talking of a confession which states preferences for wine, and step wise approaches to the sexual act. No accusations of brute force or being drunk or being tricked. Just a plain, naked account of actions which did not comply with the cues of the victim. Sure, Ansari is guilty of taking things too far, and getting into a mode without a clear verbal clue form the other end. But, at the end of the day he did not get any verbal cue, and sometimes cues need to be loud and clear.

That brings out to a more vexing issue-Aren’t the voices of women strong enough? Strong enough to ward off any wanted advances of any kind? Or should they insist only on non-verbal clues? We have already read stories where women, including celebrities were subjected to sexual assault under threat, but it is a different story this time.

It’s time women do realise that they can own property, drive cars, run governments, handle emergencies and of course be loud and clear about their choices-including their choice  of physical relationship. Nothing can be more empowering in twentieth century world, when a woman says no, and the world accepts it-without probing for further explanations.

Emmy 2017: Wrapped up in surprises

Emmy, the Oscar for television wrapped up with a night of surprises. 69th annual Emmy Awards witnessed setting up of new records and surpassing the old ones on Sunday, September 17. This time in Emmys, not only the old favorites made it to the stage but also the well-deserved newcomers glittered.

Stephen Colbert hosted the show the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and it was aired live on CBS. His musical monologue, “Everything’s Better on TV” included many shows.

The night became a starry affair for Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale as it won awards for Outstanding Drama Series, actors Elisabeth Moss and Ann Dowd taking home awards for acting and also in the drama category, writing and direction awards. Hulu’s major win for streaming service gives a tough competition to Netflix and Amazon. Another big winner of the Emmy’s included HBO’s Big Little Lies and Saturday Night Live. After 22 years, Reed Morano became the first woman to win for directing a drama series. Donald Glover, became the black man to win for both directing and acting in Atlanta and Lena Waithe became the first black woman to make a win for writing. Glover said: “I want to thank Trump for making black people No. 1 on the most oppressed list. He’s the reason I’m up here.” After Archie Panjabi’s win in 2010 for The Good Wife, Aziz Ansari became the second Indian origin winner of an Emmy. He won for Outstanding Writing for Netflix’s Master of None.

The all-time favorite Veep again won for Comedy Series and the character of Selina Meyer played by Louis-Dreyfus wins the sixth time for her role and makes history in Emmys.

Politics makes a quick appearance at the Emmy awards as Sean Spicer, Former White House press secretary made a surprise visit. Also, Saturday Night Live’s Kate McKinnon thanked Hillary Clinton as she won supporting actress award. Host Stephen Colbert took a jab at Donald Trump presidency and his tweets of not getting an Emmy as Celebrity Apprentice.

This year, Emmy was a big win for the women. The three major awards went to women-oriented shows- The Handmaid’s Tale about future sterilization of fertile women living in a dystopian future. Veep which is a funny take on women in politics took comedy award and best-limited series went to Big Little Lies which looks at domestic violence and women actress.

As per nominations in different categories, HBO led the race with 46 nominations followed by Netflix and FX being nominated for 27 each. Following them were NBC with 17 and ABC with 11 nominations. The award scoreboard is different. HBO took back 29 Emmy statues leading the scoreboard for the 17th year. Netflix got up to 20, NBC won 15, and Hulu had 10.

This time Emmy wasn’t a usual one. It was funny, dramatic, had smiles and tears, all that television requires.

Sources: LA Times, Hindustan Times

Hulu wins big at 2017 Emmys; leaves Netflix behind

Netflix pullsin a lot of nominations every year, but it was Hulu that took most of the awards at the 69th Emmy awards. Hulu, a joint venture by Walt Disney, 21st Century Fox Inc, Comcast Corp and Time Warner Inc, won 5 Emmys on Sunday, September 17.

‘The Handmaid’s Tale’, Hulu’s premier series got 18 nominations and it won three main awards. Elisabeth Moss got the lead actress award, while Ann Dowd won for supporting actress and Reed Morano bagged the best direction in drama series.

The series is based on Margaret Atwood’s classic novel. This award made Hulu the first streaming service to win the Emmys.

This year Netflix got 91 nominations, but did not take home an award in the main category.

Netflix’s ‘The Crown’ won awards for supporting actor role along with an outstanding TV movie award and outstanding writing for a limited series, movie, or dramatic special. John Lithgow won the supporting actor award for his role as Winston Churchill and Black Mirror: San Junipero grabbed the other award.

According to ComScore analyst Paul Dergarabedian, even though there is no relation between Emmy awards and the success of the network, Hulu will surely gain the recognition.

Sources: Business Insider,

Hackers attack Netflix and Marvel Twitter Accounts

Screenshot of the hacked Marvel account on Twitter
Screenshot of the hacked Marvel account on Twitter

A group called OurMine, who claim to be ‘white hat hackers’, attacked the official Twitter (United States) accounts of Netflix and comic giant Marvel today. It continues to hack Marvel accounts for reasons yet undisclosed.

The group tweeted from the hacked accounts- ” Hey, it’s OurMine. Don’t worry we are just testing your security, contact us to tell you more about that”

In less than half an hour, Twitter deleted the first hijacked tweet from @Avengers, a verified account by the Marvel-owned superhero franchise.

The Twitter handle of  the Marvel run movie “The Guardians of the Galaxy”  was also hacked along with @MarvelMusicInc, @Marvel, @IronMan, @CaptainAmerica, @AntMan, and @theblackpanther.

According to an American technology media property TechCrunch, the OurMine team is a small group of youngsters. They are on a mission to test the strength of passwords for accounts which have large number of followers and potential influence. Usually, the group posts messages advising the account owners to contact them through an email id for more information on applying better security practices. Ironically, it breaches cyber security to advertise about security provided by them.

In the past, OurMine hacked number of high-profile Twitter accounts, including Google’s Sundar Pichai, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey

According to Variety-an American digital news platform, the best protection against such attacks is the Twitter’s two-factor authentication. It notifies by sending a numerical text message to a user’s phone in case of attempts to log in from a new device. It is also advisable to keep a regular check on third-party applications that may have access to an account.


SOURCES: Variety   TechCrunch 

Apple, Netflix, Amazon to pay ‘Google Tax’ in India

Global entities like Apple, Netflix and Amazon are under the radar of the Ministry of Finance in India. The Government of India is the first in the global scenario to impose a tax on digital transactions by introducing the equalization levy, also known as the ‘Google Tax’.

A source reveals, “The gamut of equalization levy could now cover cloud computing and entertainment services provided to Indians by multinationals. The change in law could come in the upcoming Budget,” as reported in the Economic times.

If this levy is imposed on other companies providing similar services, they are bound to shift the tax burden to their customers. Customers will be paying 6-8% more for these services, which were otherwise available freely or for a minimal cost.

Industry pundits say that cloud computing and other such online entertainment and retail services may feel the heat of this move as soon as it’s applicable.

If the budget incorporates these changes and takes places on February 1st as scheduled, these taxes will be applicable from the financial year starting 1st April 2017.

So far, the equalization tax was only applicable to companies like Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn, of which only LinkedIn passes on its tax burden to its customers.

Apart from this, the next year would also require companies to provide a detailed report of their revenue, turnover, employee base and taxes as required by the OECD guidelines, mainly to restrain tax evasions.



IMAGE SOURCE: Representation image sourced from

Rumours float of Kaabil getting sued by Netflix for plagiarism

Hrithik Roshan starrer Kaabil, slated to release on January 25 might get sued by American streaming giant Netflix, as they have found glaring imitations in the released trailer, with their production Daredevil, directed by Drew Goddard.

There are three conflict points reported by Mumbai Mirror which are, both the protagonists are blind, most action sequences have been duplicated, and the colour schemes also are much akin to the American superhero flick. However, Sanjay Gupta, the director of Kaabil has tossed away every allegation and has gone on to say that the comparison is “preposterous” and “will definitely fight back” if any lawsuit is filed against them.

But, on the other hand, The Indian Express has doused rumours by saying that Netflix has no plans to follow the legal path and instead, trying to get to the genesis of the rumours. However, history says that Gupta gets easily inspired from foreign films and tries to give it a Bollywood treatment. His 2002 venture Kaante was alleged of plagiarism from Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs and even his last directorial attempt Jaazba is a remake of a South Korean thriller Seven Days.

Sources – Indian Express,Mumbai Mirror

Image Sourced from – Deccan Chronicle

Amazon’s Prime Video finally in India

Amazon launched its Amazon Prime Video in India today, almost a year after Netflix launched itself entering into the platform of video streaming service, starting from movies to web series.

Amazon Prime Video is included with Amazon Prime subscription. Prime can be subscribed at just Rs499 a year, which comes to Rs41.50 per month compared to Netflix, which is Rs500 for a single month.

This makes Amazon Prime Video cheapest video streaming service given the fact that it has such a huge library of award winning films and tv series. It is even cheaper than Hotstar, which charges Rs190 for a month.

Amazon is paying more attention to the local market and is reported to buy IPL rights, which would give them a commanding position in India’s cricket market.

Apart from this, it has also tried to venture into the Indian studios. Amazon India has officially confirmed tie-ups with Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions, T-Series and SS Rajamouli for its Prime Video service.

Livemint quoted Ajit Mohan, the chief executive at Hotstar as saying, “Like Netflix, Amazon is a great company with a great pedigree. As the leader in a category, we have created and nurtured in the last two years; we are delighted with the interest in India that has followed the launch of Hotstar.”

Source: Livemint, NDTV

Image Source: Mashable India