Whats in a name?

No no. I m not talking about an IPL owner using team name to promote his brand (Royal Challengers). I have a slightly more fundamental question. Why is it that none of the teams have an Indian sounding name. Leave out Mumbai (Indians), but the other seven? Even in ICL, except Lahore Badshahs, its the same story.

BCCI or IPL team owners’ argument could be – we are trying to appeal to a global audience. But can’t that be done via some Indian names as well. Bangalore Hoysalas? Sher-e-Punjab? Delhi Pandavas or Mugals or Aryans? Leave it, I don’t want to think of all the controversial possibilities here, but why not?

Its not just the cricket team names you know. Think of recently created big brand names around you. Tell me how many of those are ‘local’ words or names. Why is no local airline willing to use local words (pushpak, garuda, pawan, vaayu etc, keep thinking)? Why did UTI bank go Axis? Why is it called a ‘Nano’, and not ‘sawaari‘, or ‘aam‘, or ‘rathh‘ (branding gurus can think better, pardon my weak attempts).

I see three possible reasons. First would be global appeal of English. Second could be that brand gurus think ‘local’ words are not ‘cool’! Last, would be the absence of pan-India words (or language rather) – if you want majority to get it quickly, you may have to pick from or Sanskrit or Hindi names.

To me, the first reason could be stemming from lack of self confidence. I am tempted to call the second one as foolishness, but you have to concede – the ‘environment’ is such that if you are creating a high end brand, words have to be firangi. However, it is us who have collectively brought our ‘perceptions’ to this state. Okay, the third reason – that one has some dum. But then, what would be wrong in using words or slangs from regional languages as well?


6 Responses

  1. Hello Silkboard aka Pranav,
    First time here and read some of your posts randomly. Enjoyed reading them :)
    Maybe the name pulled me to your blog more than anything cos I spent almost 5yrs travelling through Silkboard witnessing its every development and issues.
    I agree with you on the Indian names to be chosen. When Madras can be changed to Chennai, I wonder why no one raised this as an issue of national interest. Like the Indonesian airlines is named Garuda, I wonder why we couldnt have a more Indian name.
    Can I blogroll you please? Do visit me sometime too :)
    – M

  2. Maybe it our perceived superiority of everything English (and lately American), a vestige of the colonial times.

  3. I think there’s one more reason. The fact that maybe brands want to appeal to an international audience, and the only language common world-over is English. It’s the same reason why this blog is in English, this comment is in English, the blog title is India/Bangalore/Things and not Bharat/Bengaluroo/(I can’t find a replacement for things)!


  4. Guru Panguji, very good analogy there, can’t beat that. Language of business (English) is taking over, and that just can’t be stopped.

    But why Knight Riders? or DareDevils? Why can’t we be confident of teaching the rest of the world some new words like (Delhi) Dilwaale, or (Kolkata) Bondhus? IPL is a real “export” and not an import riding on English language, it need not ride on English as much as IT product and company names have to.

  5. And your brand is called Silk Board :)

    A few observations:

    – The Hockey teams (PHL) have Indian Sounding names Like Sher-e-Jallandar.

    – Maybe they intend it to be a globally watched game in the long run.

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