Tag Archives | advertisements

Watch Wal-Mart’s Protester-Demonizing Commercial “Black LieDay”

Via the Nation, Wal-Mart strikes back against its critics in a mind-bending new advertising campaign:
As activists continue to organize demonstrations at McDonalds, Walmart and other low-wage firms, big protests are planned against retailers for mistreating their workers this Black Friday. In response, consultants are ramping up efforts to marginalize them. Last night Worker Center Watch, a new website dedicated to attacking labor-affiliated activist groups, began sponsoring advertisements on Twitter to promote smears against the protests planned for Black Friday. “This Black Friday, just buy your gifts, not their lies,” instructs the narrator. Parquet Public Affairs, a Florida-based government relations and crisis management firm for retailers and fast food companies, registered the Worker Center Watch website. The firm is led by Joseph Kefauver, formerly the president of public affairs for Walmart.
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Altered Smartphone Advertising In San Francisco

dronesSF Weekly notes the latest work of the California Department of Corrections, who suitably update street-level advertising to better inform the public:

Muni bus shelters are supplying a blank canvas for the California Department of Corrections, a media organization that distorts other people’s ad campaigns in order to reverse their message.

This month, the CDC decided to confront America’s drone policy by adulterating a series of smartphone ads on Muni bus shelters, including the one at Seventh and Market streets.

The new ads show a cellphone picture of predator drone strike, with the word “Pakistan” swapped in for the phone logo.

“As these operations are shrouded in secrecy, the California Department of Corrections released the rehabilitated smartphone ads to assist our colleagues in the federal government and explain the benefits of drones to war-weary Americans,” the organization explains, in a statement.

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When Sugar Was Marketed As Healthy Eating

Buzzfeed has a collection of magazine advertising from the 1950s through 1970s run by the American Sugar Association’s PR division, Sugar Information. For decades sugar was aggressively advertised to consumers (specifically women) as a healthy source of energy and weight loss, providing the “natural energy” needed by busy kids and parents while containing less calories than “fattening” foods such as apples and grapefruit (no, really). Someone you know struggling with obesity? They better up their soda intake:

sugar

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Australia’s Television Networks Ban Ad Criticizing Rupert Murdoch

Some things just can't be said on TV. The Age writes:
Australia's commercial TV networks have banned an advertisement that criticises the anti-Labor coverage of Rupert Murdoch's newspapers. Channels Seven and Ten refused to air the ad commissioned by GetUp, while Nine screened it over four days in Brisbane – then cancelled it after blaming a "coding error". GetUp says it will report all three networks to the competition watchdog for alleged "misuse of market power". The group has accused the broadcasters of censorship to avoid displeasing Murdoch and his company, News Corp. It intends to lodge a complaint with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, claiming the networks have breached rules by refusing to supply their services.
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ExxonMobil Gets TV Stations To Pull “Exxon Hates Your Children” Ads

Corporations seem to be all about irreverent ads, yet get surprisingly sensitive when the joke is on them. Via the Electronic Frontier Foundation:
In the wake of a major pipeline spill in Mayflower, Arkansas, Exxon has launched a campaign to prevent Little Rock television stations from running a political ad titled, “Exxon Hates Your Children.” To try to keep it off the air, Exxon is circulating a memo to television stations claiming that the commercial is “defamatory toward ExxonMobil’s employees.” The ads, which were paid for through crowdfunding, were scheduled to run on local ABC, NBC, and Fox stations this week, but were taken off the schedule when the stations got the memo. In February, Exxon pulled the same stunt when Comcast was set to air the ad during the president's State of the Union address.
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Coca-Cola’s Superbowl Commercial Is A Microcosm Of The Idea Of America

If you want to understand our culture, watch our commercials. Via Salon, Michael Shaw writes:
With the West in an endless struggle in the Middle East not just for resources but mindshare, we see the Coke bottle — the symbol of globalization and American commercialism — sitting there in the hot sand, the object of desire for, first of all, a hapless Gulf prince/camel jockey. Resonating with [the looming] immigration debate, we then have a Hispanic desperado evoking the desert as if the province of thirsty Mexicans looking north. It’s funny but not-so-funny when you consider that what America has to offer is, in fact, a mirage. What the ad people realize I’m sure is that, after more than a decade in Iraq and Afghanistan, the idea of “quenching” — no matter how much you “put down” the Arabs and Islamists — couldn’t be more ironic.
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How Consumer Brainwashed Are You? The Game

Via Salon, Andrew Leonard on a smash-success smartphone game which tests and hones one’s recognition of corporate symbols:

I was a little taken aback last Sunday when I saw my 15-year-old son playing Logos Quiz, a game that is based on the ability to identify corporate logos, [and which] rocketed to the top of the most popular free download apps lists this spring. Imagine a brand being able to compare recognition rates of their logo by age, by zip code or by “likes.” Imagine a brand being able to insert alternate versions of their logo to test. We’re all test subjects for the future of advertising, all the time. Logos Quiz just makes it explicit.

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Germany Army In Trouble For Propaganda Ads In Teen Magazines

It’s intriguing that marketing the military to kids is considered illegal and unethical in parts of the world, as it seems a normal part of life here in the United States. Via Russia Today:

The German Army has been accused of unethical recruitment practices, after it placed ads in a teen magazine promising “crazy water battles” and flights “in a real army plane” at its “Adventure Camps” that encourage youngsters to join the army.

The colorful adverts, showing smiling young teens, were published online and in the printed edition of Bravo, Germany’s most popular teen magazine. Under the slogan “Action, Adrenaline Adventure!” the German army, known as the Bundeswehr, is offering paid-for trips to Sardinia and the Alps for underage teens, where they are told about a possible career in the army once they come of age. Legally, the Bundeswehr cannot recruit people under the age of 18.

Ralf Willinger, a children’s rights consultant at Terre des Hommes [said] “The armed forces should be limited to recruiting adults, so that they do not attract young people who are easily influenced and can hardly appreciate what an obligation military service and the related foreign missions can entail.”

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Washington, D.C. Launches Transgender Respect Ad Campaign

The new series of PSAs breaks ground as the first such effort by an American city. DCist writes:

Mayor Vince Gray and the D.C. Office of Human Rights yesterday launched an ad campaign promoting respect for the city’s transgender and gender-non-conforming residents. The five ads, which will appear this fall, use images of members of the transgender and gender-non-conforming and convey the message that they are no different than any other D.C. resident.

City officials say that the government-funded ad campaign is the first of its kind in the nation to focus on transgender and gender-non-conforming residents.

At the launch of the ad campaign yesterday, Gray admitted that while the ads themselves would not be enough to stop discrimination and acts of violence, they would serve to raise awareness and highlight legal rights and protections that members of the community enjoy under the expansive D.C. Human Rights Act.

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