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Sony's New Illegal Ad Campaign

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posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 07:51 AM
Sony of America has a new graffiti based ad campaign, with artists based in Phillidelphia, San Francisco, New York and other large U.S. cities. Sony is hiring local artists to recreate pre-drawn cartoon-like characters in urban environments.
"It's all about hip-hop, urban and all that. They're just trying to get into the teenagers' minds," said Eddie Torres, 29, who works at a nearby furniture shop. "I think it's sharp."

Anti-blight advocates think otherwise.

"They're breaking the law," said Mary Tracy, who runs the Society Created to Reduce Urban Blight, a watchdog group that fights illegal or ill-advised billboards in Philadelphia.

Tracy said Sony ignored the zoning process that regulates outdoor commercial advertising in the city.

Philadelphia Managing Director Pedro Ramos on Wednesday faxed a cease-and-desist letter to Sony Computer Entertainment's U.S. division in San Mateo, Calif. He could seek modest fines allowed by city code or sue to recover any profit the ads produced.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

It seems to me that Sony is getting some really bad legal advice from somewhere. First the rootkit fiasco and now this. It would seem like a company this big would know better than to do something like this.

I think I would have less of a problem with it if they were hiring these artists and letting them come up with their own original art to sell their PSP. It would be no less illegal, but it might be a little more interesting.

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[edit on 5-1-2006 by asala]

posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 08:05 AM
IIRC, IBM did something like this a few years ago and got into a lot of trouble.

posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 10:33 AM
The funny part is when real graffiti artists 'modify' the 'ads'! I think I read about it in 'WIRED' magazine.

posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 10:40 AM
microsoft plastered NYC with the msn logo a few years back. they got lots of press for it.

posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 10:48 AM
While I think it should be mandatory that the walls of our cities should be plastered in meaningful and artistic graffiti (or any other form of art for that matter), I dont think that it should be for the purpose of advertising a corporate agenda, that it goes against the principles of graffiti, one of the four cornerstones of the hip-hop culture.

If we as humans ever had a nature, it is to be creative, I say spray every wall in every city with graffiti, but do it because you are an artists, not because you are getting paid for it.

Oh and Before I am attacked for my love of graffiti I would like to draw a distinction between graffiti and tagging. Tagging - were someone quickly sprays their tag (name) on a wall is pointless vandalism, not a method of creative expressionism and I dont condone it in any way.


posted on Dec, 29 2005 @ 04:32 PM
There isn't any such thing as bad publicity. Sony is a big enough company; they can eat the cost of a couple 'modest fines'......

The exposure from the news stories and the spawned debate on whether or not it was a proper thing to do will do more for the advertising then had it just been left alone......


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