Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Saatchi-Doc Martens scandal kinda obvious
OK. So far, I've refrained from saying something about the whole "Kurt Cobain and other dead rock stars wearing Doc Martens" fiasco, but I suppose one shoudn't let such a scandal pass without making a few observations. Especially when it's so easy to find one of the visuals online and run it—which is part of my point. According to The New York Times' accounting of the whole thing today (not that I haven't read it elsewhere), the agency, Saatchi, only planned on having one of the ads run once, in some obscure British magazine, and has since dismissed the naughty employee who also sent the ads to adcritic.com over here. But, wait a minute, isn't this whole scenario sooooo 1993? True, the employee shouldn't have sent the campaign stateside (copyright law differs here and the ads were illegal), but wasn'it t also silly for the agency and client to actually believe that such a wonderfully outrageous idea would remain squirreled away in the pages of the obscure British magazine in which they'd placed it? If some employee didn't start spreading it around, it seems that someone else would have, a scandal would've ensued, and the agency would at least have gotten a slap on the wrist. Saatchi wanted one of the ads to run so it would win some awards, a concept that's as old as the hills in advertising, but one that doesn't exactly work the same way when any piece of advertising has the potential become viral. If you want to keep a lid on an ad, don't run it at all.