...don't even ignore 'em.
-- Samuel Goldwyn

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


It doesn’t. I give you the recent mid-term election campaign. The Republican mix of quarter-truth slander in a TV ad blizzard. Didn’t work. The Democrats’ snarky attempts at advertising countermeasures and botched insults. Didn’t work. Didn’t even work on either party’s deep-core-base loyalists. All campaign propaganda was simply irrelevant static—always is when the citizenry is awake, alert and taking nourishment.

I give you the O.J. book flap. Didn’t work. There’s probably more to this, that'll emerge over the next few days. For example, how do African-Americans who celebrated O.J.’s acquittal feel about this project’s crash ‘n burn? But, for now, enjoy feeling righteously indignant, if you must.

Hype doesn’t work. We just think it does, because nobody, or too few of us, stand up and slap it down. For instance, hype’s working for Big Pharma because too few of us care to object to drug advertising’s replacement of the practice of medicine.

The illusion of hype’s effectiveness persists because nobody measures how intensely a particular campaign is being ignored. How do you prove a negative? For instance, it took three years for us to slap down the Iraq Affair, because we were ignoring the hype, instead of getting universally pissed off. How about a hype-ignore-ation index? How would we do that? Marketing departments try to measure even such ephemera as “awareness.” Why not ignorance? Surely Google can come up with something. Hype: to paraphrase Samuel Goldwyn, “Don’t even ignore it.”

Wikipedia: hyperbole

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