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Re: Advertising the car free city!

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  • Bijan Soleymani
    ... Good propaganda is better than bad propaganda. However I don t think we should use propaganda to get people to do the right thing. It s better that people
    Message 1 of 11 , Mar 2, 2004
      "Greg Steele" <thegisguru@...> writes:

      > Any ideas as to how to communicate this message, and is there
      > agreement that this is a good message to communicate?

      Good propaganda is better than bad propaganda. However I don't think
      we should use propaganda to get people to do the right thing. It's better
      that people think for themselves. There's also the fact that the right
      thing isn't always easier. And it's hard to sell difficult things.

      Driving isn't the right thing but in most situations it's easier. So
      they can lie to you and you know that they're lying, but you might still
      go on with it.

      Bijan
      --
      Bijan Soleymani <bijan@...>
      http://www.crasseux.com
    • Richard Risemberg
      ... From: Greg Steele With this in mind advertising transit should depict the transit rider as sexier, more powerful, smarter, etc.
      Message 2 of 11 , Mar 2, 2004
        -----Original Message-----
        From: Greg Steele <thegisguru@...>

        With this in mind advertising transit should depict the transit rider
        as sexier, more powerful, smarter, etc. because they use transit
        rather then put us with the drudgery of driving themselves, through
        traffic congestion to get where they need to go.

        Any ideas as to how to communicate this message, and is there
        agreement that this is a good message to communicate?
        ====================================
        I've often pointed out to folks that there's not much status, and certainly not dignity, in being an unpaid chauffeur, a "machine tool," as I put it (see http://www.newcolonist.com/rr29.html towards the end of the ramble....). That's one part of it. The boredom of being alone all the time, with only a view of the bumper in front of you, when you could be reading,/talking/sleeping/whatever on the train, and so forth.

        If anyone's willing actually to put in time on this with me I am willing to work on ad outlines or actual ads. Trying to place them's another thing, as http://www.adbusters.org has found out, but I have some ideas for more positive, maybe a little playful, advertising for the concept.

        We also gotta sell the on-the-ground reality, but we don't have one quite yet. Getting close, though, thanks to progressive mayors around the globe.


        Richard
      • Matt Dobbing
        Greg, thanks for your response. I agree with your points about advertising, the empty road and reality! but advertising is i suppose aspirational. I think
        Message 3 of 11 , Mar 3, 2004
          Greg, thanks for your response. I agree with your points about advertising,
          the empty road and reality! but advertising is i suppose aspirational. I
          think that car advertising plays on the idea of empowerment and freedom a
          great deal. It is also targeted at the individual. These are easy things to
          do. It is harder I think to make mass transit seem to be empowering and
          giving more freedom to the user. I'm not saying this is the reality of mass
          transit but it is (perhaps) the impression of mass transit. Of course as has
          been pointed out in this thread, the car doesn't empower people or give them
          more freedom generally but that is not its perception.

          This is what I'm sure we all find infuriating in the debate about car use.
          It is not the reality that is discussed! As you comment the car industry has
          spent all this money trying to convince people that they will feel sexy etc.
          Perhaps it has worked!!!!!!!!!

          I would guess that you would promote all the quality of life benefits of the
          city without cars. But this is a group benefit. the car lobby will I imagine
          say you are sacrificing personal freedom for a group benefit, I reckon that
          although this might be perfectly sensible it doesn't play well with
          voters/consumers!!

          Perhaps 'our' advertising could hold up some of the costs of driving against
          the cost of transport in the car free city. Cost of driving a car = this per
          year, cost in our city = this per year. Perhaps then offer 'aspirational'
          suggestions about what you could do with the money you have saved?

          Finally, thanks for dinner party facts!!! anybody got anymore?!

          Matt

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        • Greg Steele
          I think that anything that gets too number oriented will not be as effective as in an advertisement as something that goes for the emotions. E.g. a cost
          Message 4 of 11 , Mar 3, 2004
            I think that anything that gets too number oriented will not be as
            effective as in an advertisement as something that goes for the
            emotions. E.g. a cost analysis of car ownership verse use of
            transit, in fact this enforces the idea that transit is for those
            that cannot afford a car – making it that much more of a status
            symbol.

            I can image several approaches to the use of time as the selling
            point. A TV ad – cars sitting in traffic… closes ups of faces
            showing anger and frustration… [they are powerless]… cars are at a
            complete stand-still. One of these frustrated drivers (different
            version could show people of different age, race, gender) says out
            loud – "That's it I have better things to do with my time." He/she
            gets out of their car and walks way… leaving it in the middle of the
            highway turned parking lot, ala the REM video for "everybody hurts."
            The last five-ten seconds show this same person on a train (different
            version would show the person reading, sleeping, talking to other
            people, using a cell phone, a laptop computer, etc.)
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