Olympic Advertising Frenzy

preventing "Advertising Terrorism" by eliminating choice

At the 2004 Olympics, you can't drink Coke, eat a burger from Burger King, or otherwise engage in "ambush marketing" by using or wearing items you like. You could get kicked out for drinking the wrong brand of bottled water, and thanks to the tight media lock-down, would be banned if you were caught taking pictures and emailing them to your friends. You can thank the International Olympic Committee for this elimination of freedom, and their primary sponsors (Pepsi, Kodak, McDonalds, etc).

This is not the only hokey advertising idea going on lately. Some television channels have been silently modifying their shows before broadcast, replacing logos on billboards and such with logos of their sponsor companies. This includes well-known signs such as an ad in Times Square which recently was dubbed over with a different brand during an on-location broadcast. The idea of doing favors for your sponsors doesn't bother me very much, but I consider this a form of lying. The audience should at least be informed that the image does not accurately represent the location it was filmed at, and be told what specifically was changed.

These things make me wonder... What happened to truth, and penalties for lying? What happened to personal rights, and why are corporations getting favored over citizens? What's happening to freedom, fairness, responsibility, and accountability for one's actions? Will brand discrimination become a common thing, where you could get lynched for drinking the wrong brand of diet cola? With corporations becoming as large and powerful as governments, do we need a new set of rules to keep them from usurping all of our rights and freedoms? If so, is it too late to change our broken system?

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Last modified: September 17, 2004 @ 3:17 MDT
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