The M&G's social media editor Haji Mohamed Dawjee spent an hour documenting the highs - and lows - of the Gupta's newly-launched ANN7 channel.
The only way to uncover the truth behind ANN7 is to commit to watching it for a full hour. I am here to give you a few blow-by-blow new age notes on Gupta-TV. You're welcome.
It is 1.29pm, the news on ANN7 is currently a recap of its own launch last night.
Also, the channel seems to want to make it clear that it is all about The Truth Unfolding. They have a large bold font (Think Windows Word Art) crawl across the screen between inserts that reads: "TRUTH UNFOLD".
Also, does anyone else's screen look like this?
It makes the crawl fun though. You can play a drinking game and have a shot every time you guess the cut-off words right.
Like this one:
Got it? Yes, it's KwaZulu-Natal Premier Quits. Have a drink.
The presenter seems to be having pronunciation issues. She just referred to Morgan Tsvangirai as Swangaraai.
Admittedly, it's probably nerves. There's a great deal of pressure, constantly. What with the pressure on the Truth to Unfoldand all that. No one likes being ordered around Mr Gupta, except for Zuma of course.
1.42pm: I am still only one metaphorical drink down (I'm at work so I can't really drink). I have not been able to guess the words on the rest of the crawl updates so far. To be fair, I think it's because the camera shake on some of the shots distracted me. I didn't know earthquakes in South Africa were that bad. Maybe ANN7 should have replaced its launch insert with a need to know piece about earthquakes in South Africa, just saying.
1.46pm: I have just realised that the "TRUTH UNFOLD" thing actually says "TRUTH UNFOLDS", the S is cut off. Another drink for me!
1.47pm: I have no idea what this presenter's name is. There's nothing on this channel that wants to tell me. Maybe she's not real and the producers at ANN7 don't want us to know who she is. Anyway, attention camera peeps, you need to tilt the camera ever so slightly upwards, because I can see that the presenter has something in her hand. It looks like a stapler that she keeps fidgeting with. Hang on… I am being told that it is a remote for the teleprompter. Can anyone confirm? I repeat, can anyone confirm?
1.52pm: So far, no advertising. Except for advertising relating to their own channel. [See the section about "TRUTH UNFOLD".]
1.54pm: Here's what you can catch on ANN7 according to their "between takes": weather, sport, prime-time news ... and people walking in the background of the shot.
1.55pm: A Nelson Mandela Children's Hospital advert and a revelation ... The 7 in ANN7 does not stand for the 7th of 6 channels (which don't exist), it stands for 7 days a week. Okay. Got it.
1.59pm: I am going to get lunch quickly. In the meantime some more programme advertising. I'm not sure what it is though. It says this on the screen : #ashtag. (Side note: I figured the # out by myself because it was cut off from the screen. So even though it's not a word that I've completed, but a symbol, I still get another drink. Boom!)
2.01pm: New presenter. She has introduced herself as Abigail Visagie. Same headlines. Don't ask me what they are, I can't read the headlines in the crawl and I don't want to sit here and figure them out. I don't like drinking that much. Especially when I'm not really drinking.
2.09pm: I am bored of seeing the same thing over and over again (especially since a great deal of the news is already a day old, like the Mamphela Ramphele net-worth story and the child porn bust story) so I went on a little Twitter search and found these instead:
Guys, stop blowing your own trumpet until you get it right. At the moment it's absolutely appalling; a shambolic embarrassment #ANN7
— David James (@standoff2) August 22, 2013
I'm not the one to judge but channel 405 #ANN7 is a crisis
— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) August 22, 2013
— Simon Hartley (@SilverStreak2OV) August 22, 2013
If you don't know what that last tweet is in reference to you should probably go watch this:
2.14: Ooh, time for a break! And afterwardsANN7 promises to tell us why Bradley Manning has been sentenced to 35 years in jail - since presumably nobody heard the news yesterday or had the internet to find out.
2.17: And now for News from around the world – starting with a weather report in China. Really.
2.19: The TV just switched itself off. I think it may be allergic to ANN7. Careful, it may be a virus sweeping the country. Just to be safe, you probably shouldn't keep the channell tuned to ANN7 for very long. Very long being more than 5 minutes. Approximately.
2.23: "If you missed the gala, we now bring you some glimpses of it. Please watch". Wow ANN7. Really? I know you have a channel that launched last night. I am suffering through it right now.
2.25: Gala glimpse: Jimmy Manyi is thanking people for the "overwhelming love and response". He clearly hasn't been on Twitter. Shame. Don't do it Jimbo, don't do it.
2.30: Ad count: 3 x Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital ads. Too many ANN7 channel ads, on their own channel.
2.32: After hearing it again, and again, and ... again, I have just now realised that the ANN7 theme song sounds quite similar to that of Isidingo. Really. Bra Zeb? Bra Georgie? Are you in there? *Knocks on TV screen.*
2.44: Another rerun, after another rerun. I just can't anymore.
And just in case you're not convinced that you "just can't" anymore either, go take a look at this video. It's the most tweeted blunder video of ANN7 yet.