Thursday, July 11, 2002

I thought I had resubscribed to Adbusters but evidently I had not. I missed a couple of issues and yesterday bought the July/August issue. I don't have the energy to do a full review as I once would have done a la maglog, but the capsule review is this: a good issue with lots of snippets by readers and a number of pages dedicated to the art of my fave, Mark Tansey.

I'm sure this subject will be covered by the next issue of Adbusters (links found by tha weisblogg)

If you haven't already heard the rumblings -- or, rather, seen the orchestrated media campaign scuffed up to mimic a grassroots vibe -- Presto is the Nike-sponsored art gallery/showroom/club that opened in Kensington Market a few weeks ago. A marketer's wet dream, the oh-so-cool raw space has already played daddy -- complete with artist fees and complimentary shoes -- to a slew of local musicians and artists, all in the hopes of getting alt-culture brand recognition for its burgeoning Presto line.

But it gets better... by that meaning, it gets worse. Not only has Nike done the now-traditional 'co-opting culture through sponsorship', Nike are now taking a page from Adbuster's fan letter to the Situationalists and are employing "Street Teams"...

Street teams will create street level hype about Presto through on-street challenges and various 'spontaneous acts'.

The teams will pop up at locations and events across Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver both at night and during the day, engaging passers-by, issuing challenges, presenting performances by specialized talent, and bringing happiness through movement.

Naomi Klein seems to think that Nike was unaware that Presto's location, Kenington Market, was more than a funky, indie neighbourhood but is also "ground zero for the activist community in Toronto". I, on the other hand, think that Nike was absolutely fully aware of the connection and were counting on the publicity from this clash of cultures.

Rats. That means I'm being complicit in their underground marketing scheme. Please ignore what I just wrote.

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