Seeing (Red) Made Ben Want to Buy (Less)
|by Catherine Larson|
Some of you may be familiar with what happened when Bono teamed up with Bobby Schriver and the brand names of the world. The world began to see (red). Basically, a percentage of each product sold that has partnered with (red) -- Apple, Gap, Armani, etc. -- is donated to the Global Fund to help fight AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. The parenthesis or brackets are a marketing technique and according to the website identify those companies which have embraced (red).
It's a good idea, but Ben Davis had a slightly different notion. He's created something he calls Buy (Less). It parodies the Red campaign's style and look, but his point is we already own too much. According to Davis' line of thought, we don't fight poverty by buying more. His website encourages people to buy less and donate directly to the Global Fund. According to Davis, for the Red Campaign "to spend what must amount to more than $100 million dollars [a speculated amount] on advertising to raise a tenth of that for charity seems a hollow investment."
So what do you think? Do you agree more with Bono or Davis on this one? (By the way, just as a warning, the intro to the Buy (Less) site has some partially unclad figures, similar to the edgy Calvin Klein ads. Some may prefer not to enter the site for this reason, and that's why I've neglected to offer a link.)