Banner Protests

January 19, 2015

Banner Protests

There are many ways to ding a reputation. I even wrote an article about it called Reputation Warfare. A new “old” way to protest against a company or individual has recently emerged and was featured in today’s New York Times.  You might call it the old-fashioned way since it does not exactly reach millions of people all at once anywhere in the world. And it might not be the most environmentally-conscious way either. However, it does make headlines. And best of all, it is not expensive. It’s “aerial banners,” those banners that fly after small prop planes that you may recall seeing when you’re sunbathing at the beach. Several such banners have been employed recently to protest against Mayor De Blasio in the debate in NYC over his support of police officers. The banners have drawn considerable attention and I guess that is what makes them effective. They’ve been paid for by a coalition of retired police officers and they’ve said, “De Blasio, Our Backs Have Turned to You” and “De Blasio, Apologize to the NYPD!!” Interestingly, as the world keeps talking about the Internet of Everything, this is actually a non-social media tactic. Almost refreshing in sense as a reputation-assault.

Pretty soon we can expect to see drones hired to carry the same banners although I have to admit that I like just looking up and seeing blue skies with no targeted messages aimed at me. It seems that everywhere I turn these days, messages are aiming straight for me. I would, however, love to reserve the skies for pure day dreaming.

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Leslie Gaines-Ross
Leslie Gaines-Ross
lesliegainesross@gmail.com

As Weber Shandwick’s Chief Reputation Strategist, I focus on the ever changing world of reputation. For the past 25 years, I have relentlessly observed, researched and commented on the rise and fall of reputations.

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