Archive for December 23rd, 2012

December 23, 2012

Ad Creep

Lightspeed briefs

Ad-creep refers to the gradual introduction of advertising into previously ad-free spaces. The earliest verified appearance of the term is in a 1996 article ‘Creeping Commercials: Ads Worming Way Into TV Scripts’ by Steve Johnson for the ‘Chicago Tribune,’ however it may have been coined by a subscriber to ‘Stay Free!’ magazine, according to another source. 

While the virtues of advertising can be debated, ad-creep often especially refers to advertising which is invasive and coercive, such as ads in schools, doctor’s offices and hospitals, restrooms, elevators, on ATM’s, on garbage cans, on vehicles, and on restaurant menus. In Johnson’s piece, he criticizes product placement and ‘creative advertising enhancements’ as ‘one more manifestation of an environment in which the commercial assault is almost nonstop.’

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December 23, 2012

Adbusters

Kalle Lasn

The Adbusters Media Foundation is a Canadian-based not-for-profit, anti-consumerist, pro-environment organization founded in 1989 by Kalle Lasn and Bill Schmalz in Vancouver. Adbusters describes itself as ‘a global network of artists, activists, writers, pranksters, students, educators and entrepreneurs who want to advance the new social activist movement of the information age.’

Characterized by some as anti-capitalist or opposed to capitalism, it publishes the reader-supported, advertising-free ‘Adbusters,’ an activist magazine with an international circulation of 120,000 devoted to challenging consumerism. Adbusters has launched numerous international campaigns, including ‘Buy Nothing Day,’ ‘TV Turnoff Week,’ and ‘Occupy Wall Street,’ and is known for their ‘subvertisements’ that spoof popular advertisements.

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December 23, 2012

Culture Jamming

Culture jamming is a tactic used by many anti-consumerist social movements to disrupt or subvert media culture and its mainstream cultural institutions, including corporate advertising. It purports to ‘expose the methods of domination’ of mass society to foster progressive change.

Culture jamming is a form of subvertising (subversive advertising. Many culture jams are intended to expose apparently questionable political assumptions behind commercial culture. Common tactics include re-figuring logos, fashion statements, and product images as a means to challenge the idea of ‘what’s cool’ along with assumptions about the personal freedoms of consumption.

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