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Business: Advertising: Sponsorship
Sponsored UN Peacekeepers   (+4, -4)  [vote for, against]
Always in the public eye - a missed marketing opportunity

Wherever there's a trouble spot in the world, you'll find UN troops deployed with plain white-washed armoured personnel carriers, jeeps and lorries. As they attract the almost constant attention of the world's press, why not sell advertising space on these vehicles? Most advertising uses bright vibrant colours so they would not easily be confused with the olive drab used by the combatants. The revenue would go towards funding such missions.
-- Gordon Comstock, May 01 2001

PETA & Timothy McVeigh
An example of how far some people will go to market themselves. [iuvare, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Enter Jose Bove, the McHero
Article that explains why MsDonalds is not really all that popular. [Aristotle, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

A protestor's view of McDonalds. [Aristotle, May 01 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Greate Idea - Gap could sponser them - write the word GAP in big letters and paint the tanks karki and brown...
-- CasaLoco, May 01 2001

CasaLoco: yes, it might be necessary to vet the colour-schemes used. Benetton would stand out fairly well.
-- Gordon Comstock, May 01 2001

Not only a money-maker, but a source of legitimacy. How in the world could the nutcase (no offense, Uncle Nutsy) black-helicopter-fearing World Government alamists build a conspiracy theory based on armoured vehicles with the friendly faces of Ronald McDonald and the Trix Rabbit on the sides? But seriously, once corporations adopt a venue for advertising they have a strong interest in creating or preserving a positive public perception of the venue. A good thing all around, it seems to me.
-- Dog Ed, May 01 2001

*G* I'll withold my +vote, only on the grounds that the image of good ol' Ronnie McD's face on the side of an APC makes me laugh, but, more deeply, is disturbing on a level paralleled only by some of the greater literary works I've read. Other than that upsetting air, it seems a sound, even workable idea!
-- absterge, May 01 2001

// once corporations adopt a venue for advertising they have a strong interest in creating or preserving a positive public perception of the venue //

This is the basic flaw of this idea --- they're interested in creating a positive public *perception* of the venue, but advertisers are the people most skilled at making perception differ from reality. If peacekeepers were sponsored by advertisers, they'd soon start avoiding any conflict with a real danger of carnage or horror. ("Palmolive keeps your hands fresh even when you're unearthing the mass graves of raped villagers" --- nah, I don't think it'd sell.) Instead, the peacekeepers would spend their time on safe, happy, largely symbolic activities, and they'd work very, very hard to convince you that these were *much* more important than actually going in and stopping people from killing each other.
-- wiml, May 01 2001

How much do I have to pay in sponsership to have a Bullseye painted on the side of an US Armoured Personel Carrier? (Hey it'll give Tornado Jets something to aim at - rememeber the gulf?)
-- CasaLoco, May 01 2001

It would be amusing to see the peacekeepers sporting adverts for a prominent strip club or embarrassing hygenical product. Of ocurse, you have to be careful what you are advertising where. An advert for pork might not go over well in a highly Jewish/Orthodox Christian area.
-- nick_n_uit, May 02 2001

How about missiles with logos? I can just see the Jimmy Dean Sausages and Farmer John Bratwurst and Wieners and Lil' Smokies homing in on their targets now making the Oscar Mayer Wiener Whistle Sound.
-- thumbwax, May 02 2001

thumbwax, you don't think that missiles would be sponsored by, say, LifeStyles or Trojan (or whatever company owns those condom brands)?
-- wiml, May 02 2001

No, I think they'd be the ones that go off too soon.
-- Dog Ed, May 02 2001

Of coures this is guaranteed to give the peacekeepers the air of impartial respectworthiness that they need to do their jobs effectively. Then again, if they started being sponsored by the big multinationals, then I suppose their job would soon be union-busting in third-world countries anyway, so that wouldn't matter too much.
-- vincebowdren, May 02 2001

Unfortunately McDonalds is all part of the "America the Great Satan" package so it would not be wise to allow sponsorship by such a company. It would ever work because no-one would want their company to be associated with a massacre or other disaster.

Even Seasame Street can be contraversial in war-prone areas. The Iraeli equivalent collapsed because the Ireali and Palestinian contributers could not agree on who owned the land for their fictional, multicultural street.
-- Aristotle, May 02 2001

Aristotle raises an important point, whether serious or not. Such excessive commercialism is an American originated concept which many people (including Americans) regard as a symbol of America's value of money and economy over anything else. Considering America's propensity to get involved in "peace-keeping" missions where it has the most financial interests, I could not imagine that this idea would be anything but extremely ironic and a tremendous self-parody which foreigners who were not raised on the culture would see much more readily than Americans themselves.
-- Op, May 02 2001

//It would ever work because no-one would want their company to be associated with a massacre or other disaster.//

Sure about that?

>>Although not a company, PETA did, indeed, want to associate its cause with a massacre/disaster (see link)<<
-- iuvare, May 02 2001

However PETA is a lobby group, they want publicity and their proposal (not eating meat) fits their goals. Many massacres are commonly link with a catchy name and this is repeated constantly. Imagine the public relations disasters that could occurr if one was named "McMassacre" or "The Burger King Regicide" due to UN troop sponsorship.

My apologies for being a bit downbeat on this one.
-- Aristotle, May 02 2001

I don't use foul language much, iuvare. Especially not on public message boards. Generally, I am of the "makes-you-seem-less-erudite" opinion. However, looking at the link you just posted, I think it's time for an exception.

Holy shit. God Fucking Damn. I knew they were nuts, but.... Holy shit.
-- globaltourniquet, May 02 2001

Or launch a product line called "U.N." and give it blue-and-white packaging. Then lean back in your black leather armchair with steepled hands and dream dark dreams of empire.
-- Monkfish, May 03 2001

My view is that a lot of multi-nationals (CocaCola, McDonalds, Burger King, etc) are perceived as (or are) America and peacekeepers sponsored by them are not necessarily going to be well received. Of course, the associations are going to be more complex as it already hard enough to pick neutral nationalities for peacekeeping forces, let alone worry about if Nestles or Hard Rock Cafe are correct for a particular conflict.
-- Aristotle, May 03 2001

Of course Americans aren't the only ones who are involved in peace keeping missions. But they only go all out when American interests are at stake and when politicians careers can benefit from the exposure. That is why Americans were so gun-ho about Iraq but so hesitant about Bosnia.
-- Op, May 03 2001

One of the regular contributors to UN peacekeeping missions is Eire. Now an APC painted black with a cream top and a discreet harp on the side. That would look marvellous but probably not prominent enough.
-- Gordon Comstock, May 03 2001

ravenswood: The babyfood reference was the reason why I mentioned Nestles. I chose the Hard Rock Cafe as this is a global chain associated with America but actually its British, as it was started there by some homesick Americans.

At the anti-capitalist rally in London on May 1st 2001 a number of the protestors turned out to be from all around the world. It is a bit ironic, I have to admit. Jose Bove gets around a bit because the French have been known to send him as trade envoy for the Roquefort cheese making industry!
-- Aristotle, May 03 2001

random, halfbakery