m a r k a n d e y a

Free goodies for the rich…

Posted by Brian on February 11, 2006

Eric Alterman, commenting on the celebrity hoopla that has infected the Sundance Film Festival, writes:

I’m not a prig, but one of the more morally objectionable things I’ve ever seen in my life were the “gifting booths” set up at Sundance exclusively for the purposes of giving celebrities expensive things they could easily afford and then leaking the news to star-struck journalists so that they could write about how wonderful both the celebrities and the products were as if that’s what was really important at a festival designed to nurture and encourage new artistic voices.  Clearly it’s a screwy society that gives rich people free stuff and brags about it.

Which brings to mind the recent news regarding Korean Air and Asiana Air jostling for the privelege of bringing Hines Ward and his mother to Korea for their upcoming trip in April. Like Eric says, the well off Hines Ward and his mother are the last people who need a free pair of airplane tickets. So how about let them pay for their tickets and agree to donate an equal amount of money to a local charity?

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2 Responses to “Free goodies for the rich…”

  1. The ‘free press’ (called ‘earned media’ in the political business) is smart business. Those companies that get celebraties to use their products are getting advertising at a fraction of the cost of buying ads.

  2. I don’t think Eric Alterman -nor do I – question this technique’s value as advertising. But like he said, in a world where so many people get by on whatever they can, here we are giving freebies to the last people who need such a helping hand. It is screwy.

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