(Article changed on October 18, 2012 at 14:39)
Martha's Dubious Achievement Awards for 2012
You would never know there's a recession going on by listening to commercial radio in 2012. Car dealership ads were exceeded only by home remodeling and bank ads. In fact, if unemployment is really going down, it's probably all the contactors trying to "repipe" and "weatherproof" our homes. Nor were "sexual performance" ads as prevalent as in 2011--maybe all the men are out buying cars.
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The Discover Card became a new entrant in the funny ad category. Netflix' seems to have suspended its hilarious mock quiz show ads in which contestants anticipate the hosts' questions ("If you multiply...?"/"The square root of 36!"/ "Correct!") in 2012. And Geico replaced its inimitable satirical ads with an unfunny, blathering Englishman who never goes away. Why?
But there were also more wolves-in-sheep-clothing in the public service announcement (PSA) category. Big Pharma continues to pass off its ads as for the public good and radio stations continue to fall for the ruse.
Here are some early dubious radio awards for 2012.
More-Than-You'd-Ever-Want-To-Know-About Cancer Award:
Proton Therapy at ProCure Centers
Are so many people getting cancer, the topic is now fit for radio ads? Or is treating it just so lucrative that ads can ignore the 90 percent plus of people not affected and not interested in the ads? Either way, ProCure ads for "prostate, brain and lung cancer" seem to be everywhere. Do we really want to know that men can avoid "erectile dysfunction" and "incontinence" if they treat their prostate cancer with proton therapy at a ProCure Center? Wouldn't men rather hear this from their doctor --and we prefer that they do so?
Depression Is Real