Sunday, February 24, 2008

Corporate Jamming to pop culture

Corporate jamming is the exact opposite of culture jamming, where the use of sub or underground cultural movements are reinvented for the purposes of corporate propaganda and mass consumerism, thereby co-opting the sub culture to pop culture.

Here's a few examples;

Radio Rentals
"C'mon Australia join the rental revolution!"

Through the overuse of terms which would normally be used by fringe political groups like anarchists and communists, the mainstream population have become complacent and nonchalant with the term "revolution", thereby removing any impact the term would otherwise have on a persons life.

Check out the commercial above, it's an old one, but the concept is still valid. Telstra are one of the best corporate jammers I've seen so far. They take uplifting alternative music (that is, music that is played on triple J), alternative/ abstract art (phones in trees and in the freezer) and play upon cultural stereotypes (get an ice cream on a hot summers day) to "corporate jam". Then there is the message "spread the good stuff", which is really the co-opting of new age spiritualism "share positive energy and affirmation". Subtle and effective.

Three Mobile Phones

"#1 Save on deodorant - apply it while at the supermarket."

Cop-opting anarchist alternative lifestyle- and marketing it to students.

Just Jeans
The latest jeans west ad looks like a music video (not that that's a cultural thing), but it does show the move from corporate "art" to corporate advertising.

update: Modern Roofing ad - the company is selling solar panels to be installed on the roofs of houses. Two black birds are used for back and forth between each other to sell the product (subtle mind control that the company and/or product is environmentally friendly). One of the birds states as a catch phrase at the end
"Power to the people"

Culture jamming or sniggling is a resistance movement to cultural hegemony and the homogenous nature of popular culture, executed by means of public activism or guerrilla communication. It often entails transforming mass media to produce ironic or satirical commentary about itself, using the original medium's communication method. Furthermore, culture jamming is based on the idea that advertising is little more than propaganda for established interests, and that there is a lack of an available means for alternative expression in industrialized nations.

Culture jamming is very much like the stuff the guys got up to in Fight Club, below are some URLS worth checking out for examples.

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