Posted by Abe Sauer on May 24, 2012 09:56 AM
"Rubbin', son, is racin'."
So goes the often quoted line from crew chief Harry Hogge in Tom Cruise's 1990 NASCAR blockbuster, Days of Thunder. Meant to be a statement about how the sport is a rough business, it's so popular that NASCAR's president used it last year when he subtly pushed for a little more "rough business" to boost ratings.
Lately, NASCAR has taken on a whole new political form of "rubbin'. And, in some ways, it's more preposterous than anything in Days of Thunder, going by the cold reception from fans for the new EPA-NASCAR team-up.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 17, 2012 03:01 PM
"To the gay community, I apologize," stated boxer Manny Pacquiao in an interview with Mario Lopez on Extra that aired today. "I'm against same-sex marriage, but I'm not condemning you. My favorite verse is 'Love one another as you love yourself. Love your neighbor.' So I love everybody!"
That's Pacquiao, a national icon in the Philippines and one of Hennessy’s “Wild Rabbit” campaign stars, extricating himself from the hot water he landed in this week, just as he strives to change his image from indulging in cockfighting, drinking and womanizing. (His Hennessy commercial’s tagline: ''Fighting the fights that really matter. That's my 'Wild Rabbit.'")
The controversy erupted after a profile on him published May 12th in the National Conservative Examiner referenced the oft-cited Biblical passage from Leviticus 20:13, "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death.”
Pacquiao subsequently clarified that readers had erroneously believed he had quoted the verse, and that he loves and supports gays and lesbians, denounces anti-gay allegations, but does not approve of gay marriage because of his Roman Catholic beliefs.Continue reading...
social media watch
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 14, 2012 05:03 PM
Facebook may feel it has addressed privacy time and time again during its brief history, including recently addressing concerns about app privacy with the launch of Timeline.
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 10, 2012 11:06 AM
Making history this week, President Obama finally declared his support of same-sex marriage, the first such declaration by a U.S. president. Now it's time for brands to step up and get over any aversion to showing same-sex couples in their campaigns.
Case in point: Gap’s new billboard featuring a real-life same-sex couple — Tony nominee Rory O'Malley and his boyfriend Gerold Schroeder — helps bridges the gap a little bit more between mainstream advertising and homophobic prejudice.
Featured prominently on a Los Angeles corner, the ad is part of Gap’s "Be Bright" campaign and the handsome couple are certainly a significant step in the brand’s efforts to reinvigorate lackluster sales and enlarge its customer embrace.
JCPenney, under its new "Fair and Square" tagline, continues to fight the good fight, too, facing down conservative pressure groups like One Million Moms by choosing openly gay Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson and recently featuring a lesbian couple and their daughter on their Mother's Day catalog.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 3, 2012 03:03 PM
The Village Voice is under fire over Backpage — not the classified-jammed back page of its iconic free city newspaper, but Backpage.com, the subsidiary of Villlage Voice Media which expands its lucrative classifieds biz, warts and all, to the web. And by warts, we mean venereal warts, because Backpage.com makes a big portion of its income from adult classifieds, which have been accused of enabling human trafficking.
New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof has been on Backpage's back over the issue, which is near and dear to his heart. And now brands are protesting too.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 26, 2012 10:02 AM
London’s Savile Row has long been the home of some of the world’s finest tailors. Everybody from Winston Churchill to Elton John and MI5's dashing James Bond has gotten their clothes made there. The street has been around since the early 1730s but didn’t become a tailoring hub until the early 1800s.
It got a shot of cool and street cred back in the ‘60s when the Beatles opened its Apple Records studios, but it’s still better known as the place for the monied classes to secure their waistcoats, cutaway tails, and other tailoring needs for hundreds of years.
A recent change on the “golden mile of tailoring,” however, has got a few bespoke knickers in a twist. Abercrombie & Fitch just opened a children’s store along the Row and some folks weren't happy, as evidenced by a flash mob protest against A&F that was organized by the wannabe dandies at The Chap magazine on that bastion of British fine tailoring.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 24, 2012 04:06 PM
As the globe tuned in to watch the Formula One race last Sunday in Bahrain — which went ahead despite the slew of politicians, human rights groups, and even F1 fans who argued against it — fans of the sport are questioning what kind of hit the F1 brand has taken as a result of the controversy, particularly as F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone is rumored to be planning a return in 2013.
The controversy stems from the months of violence and political unrest that have snarled the country. Protesters called the race “a publicity stunt by the country's rulers to make the nation seem more unified than it actually is,” according to CNN.
Even though last year’s Bahrain Grand Prix was cancelled due to a spate of violence, F1 officials went ahead with the 2012 race, which saw the ouster of a team of a British journalists (a TV crew for Channel 4) who were covering the anti-government protests hours before Sunday's race. Reporters for CNN, Reuters and the Financial Times were denied entry altogether.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 20, 2012 12:01 PM
The folks at Lego thought they were throwing open a door to a wealth of new consumers when it introduced its Lego Friends line back in December. Since it’s being designed for and marketed to girls, the company figured it would be creating a whole new source of revenue and please any parents eager to bring their daughters into the world of Lego.
Instead, it got a whole lot more, with 50,000-plus people signing a petition against the new line. The uproar’s volume may have been turned down since then but Lego Friends still has its detractors, a fact that the toy-maker is aiming to turn around.
The first step comes today, when Lego execs are scheduled to meet with two young women who helped lead the petition and discuss possible improvements, a release from Change.org states. Bailey Shoemaker Richards and Stephanie Cole launched the campaign against Lego on the Change.org site. The two 20somethings are members of the “girl-fueled organization SPARK Movement,” according to a press release.Continue reading...