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Tis the Season

Entry 449, on 2006-12-24 at 20:52:25 (Rating 3, Comments)

My impressions of the increasing commercialisation of Christmas have been confirmed. Not only have we been inundated with advertising encouraging us to buy stuff we don't really need for Christmas, but we are already being hit with advertising for Boxing Day sales. Apparently the great capitalist machine can give us one day free from its gross excesses, but it has to make up for it by hitting us twice as hard the day after.

I really do find our consumer society, and especially advertising, sickening. I know advertising can be creative and fun, but advertisers must be one of the greatest examples of wasted talent we have. Why aren't these people out using their undoubted creative skills doing something more positive?

I have often thought about ways we could reduce the amount of advertising we are exposed to. Why not charge for advertising using a scale. The first ad could cost $1000 (or whatever is appropriate) and every repetition on the same day would double the price. So by the time the ad is played for the 10th time it would cost half a million. That would discourage the tedious rubbish we see over and over again, but smaller companies could still afford to advertise at least once.

Commerce is based so much on perceptions and branding that a realistic limitation on advertising is unlikely. Some companies don't really have a product, they have a brand. For example, companies like Nike, Coke, etc don't really worry about making good products (although many of their products are OK) but they do spend huge amounts creating a brand. Even Apple is guilty of this, but at least they also make exceptionally good products.

Well if the emphasis of christmas wasn't commerce I suppose it would be religion, and that would be even more sickening, so I suppose I should quit while I'm ahead and accept things the way they are!


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