Posts Tagged ‘advertisements’

Old Navy ad


“Why so many blacks in ads?” is one of those burning issues that I was totally oblivious to until Frank S. Robinson, no relation to the Hall of Fame outfielder, as far as I know, laid it out recently.

He wrote that “I’ve made a point of tallying blacks in ads and commercials. And in fact they are way overrepresented, relative to their 13+% population share.” Oh, dear! And I thought we were supposed to be post-racial!

An “over-educated Trump supporter” named Bruce who’s “a conscientious, growing, practicing follower of Jesus Christ” – that is oxymoronic to me – elucidates further that not only are there too many blacks, but that “women as the head of household and/or the ‘brains of the outfit’ are overrepresented” as well, and breaks down other delineations.

“Urban liberal advertising agency powers are still directing ad content and money to buy ad campaigns, so this should be no surprise.

“However, are they risking a backlash? Are they fomenting a bit of ‘reverse racism’ and unnecessary divisiveness?”

Oh, so NOW it’s “divisiveness”. Maybe I need that course that some GWU law professor suggested to understand certain disgruntled 2016 voters.

To deal with this “scourge”, I recommend:

Frank should look at TV commercials, not just in recent years, but over the period that there has been national television. Let’s pick 1947, because that makes it an even 70 years, and because that was the year the World Series was first broadcast nationally – OK, to six cities from Schenectady to St. Louis.

Bruce should calculate the racial composition of those ads running in the 1950s and 1960s and well beyond versus the racial breakdown. He would discover, shockingly, that there was a certain group that was “overrepresented” compared to its numbers in the population for a very long time.

Moreover, the ads are representing a changing demographic. One in seven marriages in 2014 were of people from different races/ethnic groups, so the commercials represent not just what is but what will be.

At the point that the average number blacks and Hispanics et al. in ads are overrepresented over the seven-decade span – and not just the “non-threatening black friend” (yikes, 1 black person among 4 white people is already over your 13% quota!) – I’ll get back to them on what to do about this “problem”.

Meanwhile, I’ll muse over Frank’s assertion: “That yuppie demographic is where the consumer-spending money is. And for them, blackness is actually attractive; connoting coolness, hipness, with-it-ness, knowing what’s going on. Not inferior but superior. And to this demographic, an America fully integrating blacks is a better America. Putting them in ads hence creates a positive buzz.”

In other words, that assertion from the 1960s and ’70s that some deemed “racist” may be true: Black IS beautiful. And speaking of which, Procter and Gamble put out an ad called the Talk, which a conservative site described, in the title of its article, as “‘Sick sick sick’ racist Procter & Gamble ad crosses every line! If you are white, brace yourself before watching”.

I was listening to our classical music station early one morning, and I hear the Rheingold beer jingle. OK, it wasn’t, really. But it certainly REMINDED me of it.

I discovered here that the melody I heard was in fact the Estudiantina Valse, Opus 191, No. 4 (The Students’ Waltz), a title I had never heard of.

“The tune was composed by a pair of obscure French composers, the tune itself by Paul Lacome (1838 – 1920); But ironically it is often incorrectly attributed to the man who arranged it in a rollicking Strauss-like arrangement for two pianos — named Emile (“Emil”) Waldteufel (1837 – 1915).

“Waldteufel included it in a set of tunes arranged for 2 pianos, published under his own Opus number, which blurred the issue of authorship right down to the present day.” In fact, I have found almost NO one to attribute this to Lacome, only to Waldteufel.

“The Beer jingle with a lyric by an unknown ad agent, used the melody of this famous light-classical waltz tune.”

The lyric was:
My beer is Rheingold the dry beer.
Think of Rheingold whenever you buy beer.
It’s not bitter, not sweet, it’s the extra dry treat
Won’t you try extra dry Rheingold beer?

I remember the third lyric as “it’s refreshing, not sweet…”, but there are a lot of variations.

“Ironic that this melody, which some may remember as the quintessential German Beer Hall tune (images of people with swaying cups all singing in unison) is actually of FRENCH, rather than German, origin.

The beer sponsored Rheingold Theater, a dramatic anthology series, on NBC Primetime in 1955 – 1956. Rheingold Beer, “despite its Wagnerian opera name, was brewed in a little brewery located in Brooklyn, NY; and which tried to use the early medium of TV to get a little respect — or “brand recognition” at least.

Still, Rheingold Beer, “introduced in 1883, is a New York beer that held 35 percent of the state’s beer market from 1950 to 1960. The company was sold by the founding German American Liebmann family in 1963… Rheingold shut down operations in 1976, when they were unable to compete with the large national breweries… The label was revived in 1998…” but it’s not the same, or so I am told.

WHY do I remember the lyrics to a song for a product I have NEVER consumed? Herwitz Associates suggests “a dozen principles for improving memory, but the concepts can just as easily be applied to making a message memorable.”

Listen to Estudiantina Valse here or here or here or here, featuring a 26-tone Violinopan (thanks, Jaquandor!)

Listen to the Rheingold beer jingle here or here or here or here (modern)

libraries-because

Climate change illo is so perfect, it’s undeniable

Dying to be me! Anita Moorjani at TEDx BayArea

It’s Time To Call Out ‘Nice Racists’ And Their White Fragility

Self Care For People of Color After Psychological Trauma

No touching. No human contact. The hidden toll on jail inmates who spend months or years alone in a 7×9 foot cell

The Smithsonian’s African American museum – a monument to respectability politics; hmm, I am a charter member

Forehead Tittaes / Marion Cotillard Read the rest of this entry »

My fascination over a cereal ad – no, actually, THE Cheerios ad featuring an interracial couple and their child – is that all the hate it has engendered doesn’t surprise me at all. The argument from opponents – besides the scatological responses so bad that General Mills had shut off the comments on the YouTube video – is that “they are throwing” miscegenation “in our faces”, whereas the cereal producer’s claim is that they’re showing the diversity of the population. There has been a clear uptick in the number of mixed race marriages in the US this century.

Of course, you KNOW what the real problem is for some people with that ad? Read the rest of this entry »

I saw this post from SamuraiFrog about The Great American Cereal Book and immediately wrote: “OMG – this is a book for me. I LOVE cereal.” Believed I should write about it, but then thought, “Didn’t I just do that?” As it turns out, the post I was thinking about I wrote in 2006 (!) – time is so strange – when I described my peculiar and specific rules involving the mixing non-presweetened cereal. So I guess I can revisit it here.

Why I love cereal:
1. It was the first meal I could prepare myself.
2. As alluded to in the previous post, it is very educational. As an active reader of the box, it was where I learned that riboflavin and niacin were B vitamins.
3. I learned the difference Read the rest of this entry »

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