Proposed legislation in Australia would force cigarette companies to package remove all marketing and branding from cigarettes packs.
I've been following new proposed legislation in Australia that would limit tobacco companies’ design of cigarette packs in an attempt to make tobacco products less appealing. The legislation would force cigarette companies to sell their cigarettes in standardized drab packaging without logos (but with health warnings). The Australian government selected the olive-brown color design based on research that it is one of the least attractive colors; a similar unbranded box has been considered in the UK.
Philip Morris claims that the regulations would violate international trademark and intellectual property law as well as destroying brands that have been costly to build over 40+ years. Ouch.
I'll be interested to see if the plain packaging really does anything to change behaviors (I can see it slowing new uptakes but existing tobacco patrons might not be swayed). Regardless, I do like the idea of the removal of branding as a weapon against marketers who seek to do harm.
Two Monday Worries starts your week off right, tracking troubling tales trending in design, advertising, and ethics.
1. Google is Making me Stupid
I’m not thinking the way I used to think. I can feel it most strongly when I’m reading. Immersing myself in a book or a lengthy article used to be easy. My mind would get caught up in the narrative or the turns of the argument, and I’d spend hours strolling through long stretches of prose. That’s rarely the case anymore. Now my concentration often starts to drift after two or three pages. I get fidgety, lose the thread, begin looking for something else to do. I feel as if I’m always dragging my wayward brain back to the text. The deep reading that used to come naturally has become a struggle...
The kind of deep reading that a sequence of printed pages promotes is valuable not just for the knowledge we acquire from the author’s words but for the intellectual vibrations those words set off within our own minds. In the quiet spaces opened up by the sustained, undistracted reading of a book, or by any other act of contemplation, for that matter, we make our own associations, draw our own inferences and analogies, foster our own ideas.
Read the whole article here and an interesting follow-up here. (Thanks, Seamus.)
2. Max Barry: The Lawnmower People
But [corporations] weren’t enough of a person, apparently, so now they have First Amendment rights. In particular, they have the right to spend as much money as they like on political advertising: airing ads in favor of anti-regulation candidates over pro-regulation ones, for example.
The Supreme Court has let them into homes: now the [corporations] will speak to us through TV, radio, internet, print, and tell us who to vote for. That might not seem like a problem. After all, you are a smart person. You’re probably not persuaded by advertising. The thing is, everyone thinks that, and advertising is an $600 billion industry. Someone, somewhere is getting $600 billion worth of persuasion.
Read the whole article here.
Advertising, Concetration, Corporations, First Amendment, Google, Internet, Legislation, Politics, Productivity, Reading, Two Monday Worries|