Product placement really is everywhere. If you tune into theYouTube drama "Lonelygirl 15"
you'll find one of the teen stars chowing down on Ice Breakers Sours Gum. There's even a close-up on the box. And it's a smart way for the Internet soap to boost its revenues, even better than adding an ad to the end of each clip, as the advertisers are guaranteed that the viewer is watching. Lonelygirl won't talk about it, through from the start the show's makers were hoping for product placement, and Hershey's which owns the IceBreakers brand, says that it makes sense.
So here's my question -- if user-generated content becomes inundated with product placement will its popularity drop?
Satellite Radio's confirmed monopoly
We can debate over whether XM and Sirius' merger will be good or bad for consumers and investors -- but will it even happen? A study sent yesterday to the FCC and Department of Justice confirmed that the proposed merger would "create a monopoly." And most of the time monopolies are considered in violation of antitrust laws. Put together by the "C3SR" -- the Consumer Coalition for Competition in Satellite Radio. They say they're dedicated to "protecting the interests of the 14 million sat radio subscribers" but please, this is clearly a trade group... whatever this group has found, the fact is that yes, the merger is monopolistic, the question is whether competition with other ways to get music and radio, such as the Internet, will mean that it's still competitive.
iTunes makes it easy
iTunes couldn't possibly feel threatened in the music download space, yet today they announced a new service to make their consumer's lives easier. They've just launched "Complete my Album" a service that allows customers save money on an album if they've already bought some tracks, by giving them a 99 cent credit for every track they've purchased from that album. You've got 180 days to make the upgrade after you've bought the one song. Good deal for consumers, encourages you to upgrade if you like an artist. Will it make any big difference over the long run? Nah.
Kwik-E-Marts are where Homer Simpson buys his Duff beer. Now 7-Eleven is reportedly considering "Simpsonizing" some of its stores -- converting them with a promotional focus, to coincide with the "Simpsons Movie". The idea is that re-fitting a bunch of stores with a "Kwik-E-Mart" during the push of movie publicity will generate good buzz, despite the fact that the Simpsons makes the stuff sold there seem pretty gross. Synergy. At least 7-Eleven is smart enough not to get upset about the similarity of likeness...
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