Archive for the 'Bad Products' Category

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

Forbearance as Subsidy

Why doesn’t the IRS allow everybody to file their tax returns online for free? The answer, of course, is the same as in the case of the lack of regulation of cable and internet access: Forbearance from obvious and efficient public answers allows economic waste/corporate profit ranching. By keeping the IRS from running its own e-file system, the overclass is able to sell the simple software needed for that task at high, annually repeated prices.

Meanwhile, Leslie Savan, who advises BBM critics to “follow the flattery,” must be laughing herself silly watching the insipid, truth-concealing pitches of the resulting rip-offs:

Aside from the sickening spectacle of watching the self-same corporate oligopoly that lobbied to block simple reason flatter its victims for remaining ignorant of such basic realities, one has to ask: Why not just fill out the paper forms? TurboTax costs at least $50. A stamp is now 49¢.  How amazingly dumb is it to prefer the former to the latter?

Share Button

Posted by Michael Dawson | Filed in Bad Products, Commodification | 6 Comments »

 

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Brand Provocation

Cadillac’s extra-obnoxious “Poolside” ad was, it now says, this:

The “Poolside” spot, created by ad agency Rogue, is intended to serve as a “brand provocation,” according to Craig Bierley, Cadillac’s advertising director.

Of course, the deeper story is the usual one. The ad is a piece of flattery designed to push the marginally comfortable into proving their upper-classiness by buying the $75,000 monstrosity it promotes.

Advertising Age interviewed Cadillac’s Mr. Bierley on the strong reaction to the spot. He said the spot’s been “misconstrued” by some viewers. He wanted to set the record straight. Among the misperceptions:

It’s aimed at the richest 1%

Not so, says Mr. Bierley. Rather than millionaires, the spot’s targeted at customers who make around $200,000 a year. They’re consumers with a “little bit of grit under their fingernails” who “pop in and out of luxury.”

Share Button

Posted by Michael Dawson | Filed in A Culture of..., Bad Products, Flattery | 23 Comments »

 

Friday, February 14th, 2014

Comcast Monopoly: The Marketing Logic

Per today’s Advertising Age:

Acceleration of addressable advertising

One of the biggest obstacles to ad targeting at the household level has been a lack of broad reach, which makes running campaigns across multiple operators a clumsy and inefficient effort. The merger should eventually help expand the addressable universe to the kind of scale that advertisers desire and speed up advances in areas such as dynamic ad insertion.

And increasingly, Comcast will have the data to make addressable smarter. With about 30 million set-top boxes, it will have an even bigger trove of ratings information, viewing habits and personal data. Combined with marketers’ own data, that will help planners and buyers laser focus their media selections, Mr. Kanefsky said.

Share Button
 

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Belly Laugh on Media Monopoly

media-monopoly1 The filters that govern mainstream journalism sometimes produce sentences that are simply hilarious. Reporting today on the proposed merger between the Comcast and Time-Warner media profit fiefdoms, The New York Times notes that “the deal, if completed, could have impacts on consumers across the country, though it is unlikely to reduce competition in many markets.”

To be sure, you can’t really reduce what does not exist, can you?

Share Button
 

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

Ideology on Wheels

Question:  Without addressing the question of what passes for work in their ranks, how many 1-percenters take only two weeks of vacation?

Share Button

Posted by Michael Dawson | Filed in Bad Products, Lies | 1 Comment »

 

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Adieu, Robert Zimmerman

The latest, and very arguably the most heinous, violator of the Hicks Dictum*:

_____
*Here’s the deal folks: you do a commercial, you’re off the artistic roll call forever. End of story, OK? You’re another corporate fucking shill, you’re another whore at the capitalist gang-bang. And if you do a commercial, there’s a price on your head, everything you say is suspect, and every word that comes out of your mouth is now like a turd falling into my drink.

Share Button

Posted by Michael Dawson | Filed in Assholes, Bad Products | 15 Comments »