Rider v rider: how transit etiquette campaigns make you the scapegoat

 

At best, etiquette campaigns treat the symptoms of transit inefficiency, not the disease, they argue. At worst, they contribute to a ridership more concerned with each other’s behaviour than advocating for a better system.

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Madrid tackles ‘el manspreading’ on public transport with new signs

Madrid’s transport authorities are taking a stand against seated male selfishness with a campaign to tackle the social scourge that is manspreading.

Fed up with men whose thighs fail to respect the boundaries of bus seats, the Spanish capital’s Municipal Transport Company (EMT) is to put up signs discouraging the practice.

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I’m an ex-Facebook exec: don’t believe what they tell you about ads

 

For two years I was charged with turning Facebook data into money, by any legal means. If you browse the internet or buy items in physical stores, and then see ads related to those purchases on Facebook, blame me. I helped create the first versions of that, way back in 2012. The ethics of Facebook’s micro-targeted advertising was thrust into the spotlight this week by a report out of Australia. The article, based on a leaked presentation, said that Facebook was able to identify teenagers at their most vulnerable, including when they feel “insecure”, “worthless”, “defeated” and “stressed”.

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From Coke’s flower power to Kendall Jenner’s Pepsi ad – how ads co-opt protest

 

It’s a unique skill to have #boycottpepsi trending among both the right and the left. It managed to alienate both sides of an increasingly polarised consumer universe,” says Nicola Kemp, trends editor at advertising trade magazine Campaign, who points out that the ad was made by an inhouse team at Pepsi, which may be why there is a sense that nobody thought to point out its deficiencies before it aired. Kemp argues that not only was the ad tone-deaf, it also failed to make any political point at all, co-opting the imagery, without taking a stand. “You get a lot of people saying we’re in a state of perpetual outrage, that brands should always be aware that taking a stand can create a backlash, and that it’s better to stand for something than for nothing. But in effect it did both: it stood for nothing, with these anodyne signs, and it still created a backlash.” What about the idea that all publicity is good publicity? “There is a growing conversation within marketing that outrage is a form of social currency, and that social currency equates to sales,” Kemp says. “But that is an overly simplistic point of view. I do think that, honestly, no brand would set out to create this sort of response.”

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From ‘hands that do dishes’ to a bathtime Flake: the changing face of brands on TV

 

Ads like the one for Harmony hairspray in the 1970s perpetuated the idea that a woman’s main aim was to appeal to as many men as possible, as a series of potential suitors asked: “Is she, or isn’t she?” A later campaign for the deodorant Impulse showed men who “just can’t help” handing flowers to a fragrant woman. However, as commercials moved away from predictable stereotypes, many of the conventional gender roles were helpfully turned on their head.

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From ‘hands that do dishes’ to a bathtime Flake: the changing face of brands on TV

 

Ads like the one for Harmony hairspray in the 1970s perpetuated the idea that a woman’s main aim was to appeal to as many men as possible, as a series of potential suitors asked: “Is she, or isn’t she?” A later campaign for the deodorant Impulse showed men who “just can’t help” handing flowers to a fragrant woman. However, as commercials moved away from predictable stereotypes, many of the conventional gender roles were helpfully turned on their head.

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Here are Facebook’s marketing tips for exploiting lonely people

 

Facebook has some advice for brands on how to get their marketing messages to resonate with newly single people. In a blog post today, the company expounded on ways in which single people act in the wild and on the internet, as well as ways to capitalize on their sad, sad lives

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Mossberg: Lousy ads are ruining the online experience

 

Last Saturday, as the New England Patriots were sloppily beating the Houston Texans 34–16 in a playoff game, I wanted to look at the highlight video of a play using the NFL app on my iPad. To watch that 14-second clip, I had to suffer through a 30-second ad for something so irrelevant to me that I can’t even recall what it was. The length and content of that video ad Saturday was, in my view, way out of proportion to the length and value of the clip itself. And that’s just one small example of why the advertising-supported model online is broken, and is threatening the whole online content experience with it.

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ASA bans Heinz Beanz’s Can Song advert for safety concerns

 

A Heinz TV advert teaching viewers how to use cans of its baked beans to drum out a song has been banned for being dangerous for children to copy. The commercial, which used the strapline “Learn the #CanSong, featured children, teenagers and adults using Heinz Beanz tins to drum out the rhythm of song. Nine viewers lodged complaints with the Advertising Standards Authority that the advert encouraged “unsafe practice”, with six believing that it could be dangerous for children to emulate.

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The secret life of a clickbait creator: lousy content, dodgy ads, demoralised staff

 

Viral content and clickbait sites are different to your classic startups. They often don’t raise any money, instead generating massive amounts of capital per day by posting other people’s kitschy videos and images while plastering them with countless ads. Instead of planning for the future and diversifying their business model, most rely heavily on Facebook and adapt only when the social media company forces their hand by changing the algorithms. The worst part about these companies, however, is the emphasis on volume of product – the content – and the lack of emphasis on the wellbeing of the producers – the writers.

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