Friday 25 September 2009

The rise of Product Placement

Brand republic reported last week that secretary of state for culture media and sport Ben Bradshaw has announced a Government U-turn on the laws limiting product placement on British TV. It is already rife in films, James Bond wears a 'xxxxx' watch and drives a 'xxxx' car as he goes around being a sexy macho uber man. If you watch any US made programmes you will find loads of product placement, this image is from American Idol. Not all of it is as blatant as this example, the more subtle efforts probably work better anyway. So where were the Climate Change campaigners when Ben Bradshaw made this announcement at The Royal Television Society last week? If I had of known about it earlier, I would have gone down there, I'm keeping my eyes open for other opportunities. Consumerism is at the heart of most if not all environmental problems. We live in an age of aggressive materialism product placement is like a virus that fills the minds of the TV viewing public with reassurances that drinking Coke, driving SUV's, wearing designer label clothes and so on is OK and indeed desirable. Obviously this could be a good thing, maybe Ecotricity, Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace will be able to infiltrate their logos into Eastenders and Coronation Street, somehow I think they will be blown out of the water by bigger, richer, more polluting corporations. Throw away your television

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