Video likes these abound on the internet. They're often titled "Watch what happened when ....". Sometimes it's citizens taking action against a boorish bureaucracy. Other times it's news organisations doing an exposé. But they are seldom created, uploaded and shared by political parties.
The video above, shared on the official Facebook page of the Aam Aadmi Party seeks to change all that. In a scene that seems inspired by popular Bollywood film Nayak, Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi Manish Sisodia can be seen entering the offices of a government hospital only to catch an employee watching movies while ignoring the long queue of patients outside the office.
It's being called a surprise check despite cameras filming the proceedings before Sisodia enters the office. That would make it a PR stunt. Unless the Aam Aadmi Party has decided to enter sting journalism. By the end of the episode, an irate Sisodia can be heard telling a supervisor "Hatao isko (get rid of him)" despite many pleas by the employees.
It's also a form of internet shaming, something that writer Jon Ronson, who has written a book about it, knows a lot about. In the video below, Ronson talks about how "one tweet" can ruin your life. His interview with Monica Lewinsky that was featured in the book propelled Lewinsky to giver a viral Ted Talk where she spoke about public shaming and finally spoke about being the woman in the Bill Clinton scandal.
He describes how a simple tweet can go viral. The fascinating fact, according to an internet economist, is how a viral trend can make Google between $120k and $468K while those doing the actual shaming got nothing. "We were the unpaid shaming interns," Ronson said.
The shaming stunt seems to have worked. AAP's video had been viewed nearly two million times within a day, with quite a few of the comments praising the party for carrying out the surprise check.