Saturday, January 30, 2010

Mr Wentland, Against Advertising, Says, “Matter Settled.”

I can identify two possibilities when it comes to advancing maturity – either you broaden your range of acceptable opinions or you focus them more narrowly. Stephen H Wentland of Houston wrote a concise example that appears in the “Letters” section (page B6) of this morning’s Houston Chronicle:

Since the Supreme Court ruled that big business and other large groups can have unlimited access to TV and the Internet, some may think that crowding out the little guy will make it more difficult to decide on issues or select candidates. Not for me. Anything that massive advertising promotes, I’m against. Matter settled.

Those are Wentland’s 54 words as they ran in the paper today.

I imagine Wentland does not drive a car or truck. A man of such firm conviction would never be in favor of using such a heavily advertised product. Perhaps he takes public transportation to do his shopping since Houston Metro spends relatively little to advertise its bus service.

What does Wentland do when he gets to the grocery store (presuming he actually uses one)? Does he put only unadvertised second-tier brands or store labels in his cart? Maybe he eats a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables since he’d rarely see big marcomm budgets promoting bananas and onions.

After a nourishing all-natural dinner, Wentland won’t be watching TV. Advertising-supported broadcast channels would be anathema to him; and cable – well, Comcast is a big spender so Wentland would be against that too.

Before bed, he may brush his teeth using store-brand toothpaste rather than Crest or Colgate. And toilet paper?

Let’s draw a veil over the subject. Wentland has a right to his opinion, especially since it has appeared in the city newspaper. But since the Chronicle itself is supported by advertisers’ dollars..?

1 comment:

Joan Rust said...

Having lived with an advertising"person'" for 38 years as a domestic consumer, I am unsure about this. I love the advertising business, sometimes I am duped by it, Mostly I take it with a pinch of salt. But nevertheless I am in awe of those creative minds who come up with something special, either in words or visually. There is a change though. Now it is more creative propoganda. Perhaps?