Hargobinangun, Yogyakarta, Indonesia – 01/11/10 – 24:00 West Indonesia Time. Marijan, Pujo, and many other who died from the Mt.Merapi eruption Tuesday, 26 October 2010, surely never realized that other parties may exploit their sacrifices for the sake of branding image development. Nor do the survivors whose grieve can be tremendous means for great commercial advertisement.
Contextual to Indonesia culture which granted leaders with huge privileges socially, their visits to disaster sites can be another disaster for many parties. Security agencies, local government, survivors, all of them are potentially experiencing their second misery. Contrary to that, the visits be showcases for the visiting leaders in developing their image as parties who care and attentive. This is really good way to boost their popularity.
Related to that, political parties, mass organizations, individual politicians, government officers, or celebrities, are all racing at the same track: disaster. Just look at their nature as they invited reporters during their visits. Unfortunately, news casters catch them in, and boost their image onto a public. Or learn how so many political parties erected their banners big enough to watch it from half kilometers away, in front of their disaster respond posts.
As for commerce, corporations tremendously take any chance to advertise their products. Let see rows of banners along the street of Jalan Kaliurang heading to Mt.Merapi where the disaster be centered. Various cellphone operator companies, energy drinks producers, side by side with the banners and flyers by political parties, youth or mass organizations.
Disaster response, circus site, or advertisement?