B.C. pot bears wake up with Charmin

It has been quite awhile since my previous post. I actually have a draft post from last November that didn’t get finished.  I have concentrated on the Dark Pine Photo blog, where some of my posts were connected to Media Literacy.  Today I had to share the following for the humour and as an example of how mass media can contain intended and unintended messages.I was reading the news on the  CBC news page and decided to check out the article, B.C. pot bears wake up with the munchies ( page & Video).

After reading the article I started the video, and that’s when things took an interesting turn. You see CBC, like many media online news  outlets, need advertising to cover costs and before the news item started I got a commercial.

Yes, it was the Charmin Bears spreading the word about Charmin Toilet Paper.

Now the commercials will rotate depending on viewer and how many times you watch the video. It was just the luck of the draw that it was the Charmin Bears and I just managed to catch an image before the commercial was over.

On one level this is just a bit of ironic juxtaposing of a headline and a commercial, but it is also an example of how easily mass media can alter an intended message. This is important both for advertisers and news media outlets. Awkward placed photos, headlines, and advertisements  have been appearing in a newspapers for years. They have given us chuckles and in some cases caused newspapers to issue apologies.

With other forms of media the problem gets worse.  A poorly placed TV commercial can ruin the tone of the show and turn off a potential customer, or it can make your product look ridiculous to the point of altering the perception of the brand and the product. Once marketing moves into the digital realm, control becomes an even bigger problem. Anyone can capture  such a moment and share it with the rest of the online community.   …..Oh dear me.

Two final points: 1.   I miss  Mr. Whipple.

2. CBC has put the Age of Persuasion online. The Age of Persuasion explores the countless ways marketers permeate your life, from media, art, and language, to politics, religion, and fashion.


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