Photo from the Las Vegas Sun.
Imagine walking along Las Vegas Boulevard as a tourist. And suddenly you see a vehicle sauntering toward you. It’s all lit up. You realize it’s not just any ordinary vehicle. It’s a moving, mobile advertisement. And beyond the plexiglass of the cargo area is a girl. Dancing. On a pole. And it’s all in the name of advertising. (To read the full story from the Las Vegas Sun, written by Joe Schoenmann, click here.)
Of course Las Vegas is known for being ridiculously over-the-top. But when does advertising go too far? Those who support the mobile advertising device for Deja Vu Showgirls says it’s protected by the First Amendment–that it’s commercial speech. Those who oppose it argue the most obvious reasons–it’s a distraction and may cause an accident. Oh, yeah, and there are girls in bikinis dancing on polls.
The fact of the matter is that business is slow these days. In our not-so-thriving economy, advertisers and marketers have had to be more innovative than their competitors to make a buck or two. According to Mr. Schoenmann’s article, the effectiveness of the mobile advertising has been “phenomenal.” Obviously, a truck with scantily-clad women dancing inside is going to turn a head or two.
Photo from Eparsa Magazine
Calvin Klein, along with actress/model Eva Mendes, has also been picking up some heat with its newest advertisement in Soho, New York City. Some are calling the sexy billboard shot, shown above, as “borderline pornography.” But it has to be driving business sales for Calvin Klein through the roof, right?
So what do you think? In a world where advertising rules–especially in magazine journalism–when can it go too far? Or is this just innovative advertising? Is this really a form of commercial speech, or just a form of pornography? If you were asked to run an ad for a magazine that you found inappropriate or offensive, would you still run it if you knew it would bring in a lot of revenue for your magazine? Why or why not?