Postcards from the Bleeding Edge
Friday, June 27, 2003

  Unbrand America

Unbrand America

The Unbrand America campaign is promoting silent protest by asking people to make creative use of a black spot in public places. They are also looking for donations so they can run a series of ads by July 4th. Running ads to bash branding... that's a difficult concept - but I don't know how to outshout 3000 marketing messages a day. I've learned how to silence them in my home, but that's all. A blogger's voice whispers to the literate and googled, reaching/teaching the bamboozled is something I've been struggling with ever since Doc & David Weinberger published World of Ends. The very people that need to read that piece - don't read.

The black spot - is in itself a recognisable "brand". I rebranded myself in Beating the Brand - Part 1 - crying out - "I AM THE-ANTI-BRAND!" - but I've been trying to work at a subtler level since. Really. Much subtler than this.


The , is an ANTI-BRANDING symbol. It's an in-your-face form of protest that cries out - "Wake up America! - you are being blinded, deafened, dulled by sensory overload! You are not pavlovian dogs!"

Until I got the brands out of my face last month I couldn't think clearly enough to write - and look at me now - writing nearly every day. You too can write gonzo stuff if you just get your environment to shut up!

If you want to know who made your shirt, look at the tag. If you want to know who made my car, ask. Same for my fridge. You don't want, or need, to process the information on a daily basis. It is a mind and soul-sucking exercise to filter it all out. I have got to make clear that I am not against brands - I'm not THAT anti-corporate - all I want to do is get the constant reminders of branding out of my/our lives. OK?

I'm going to use the black spot in my future posts but I'm planning to make my website go entirely black on July 4. Why? I'm ornery. The people doing the unbranding brand are also promoting other causes that I don't believe in - And... well, I'll get to that later this week.



Brian writes in. I'm going to comment on this - maybe move it up the blog later - but I have things to do this morning.

Branding is about bypassing quality



 
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David Täht writes about politics, space, copyright, the internet, audio software, operating systems and surfing.


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