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BOB GARFIELD

Bob Garfield is editor at large for MediaPost. A long-time advertising and media industry columnist, critic, author, essayist, pundit, international lecturer and co-host of National Public Radio’s Peabody Award-winning “On the Media” series, he previously wrote for Advertising Age and contributes a biweekly column to The Guardian.

Articles by Bob All articles by Bob

  • Sex And The Smoking Gun in Garfield at Large on 05/23/2016

    You know what? Let's do have a trial by media. Definitely -- so we can watch in astonishment as the corporate defendant demonstrates its guilt by the very way in which it is defending itself. In its answer to sexual harassment charges, WPP is either employing cynical lawyering of the most loathsome kind or evincing cluelessness on a mythic scale.

  • Freedom Isn't Free -- It's $8.99 A Jug in Garfield at Large on 05/16/2016

    Inevitably, the bold rechristening of the quintessential American beer will persuade other familiar brands to adopt new identities as they too strive both to remain culturally relevant and leech off the goodwill of popular institutions, personalities and even states of being.

  • Ding Dong, The Witch Is Looking Somewhat Less Wicked in Garfield at Large on 05/02/2016

    At last tally, there were a trillion competing streaming music and video services, with many more to come, offering exactly the a la carte selection we always thought we wanted. And once everybody connects the hardware that gives us a cable-guide-like interface for sorting among our streaming options, we will have the content world we demanded. Whereupon cable might look, relatively speaking, like a bundle of joy.

  • Smooverly: Investor Deck in Garfield at Large on 04/25/2016

    Welcome to Smooverly. The first publishing platform to combine real-time video, an engaged millennial audience, key influencers with unprecedented social reach and personal biometrics.

  • Yo, Czech It Out in Garfield at Large on 04/18/2016

    Every single person in the world expressed puzzlement last week at the news from Prague. In a marketing initiative that literally will alter the map of Europe, the Czech Republic is rebranding itself Czechia.

  • Yahoo Do You Think You're Fooling? in Garfield at Large on 04/11/2016

    Gerald Levin, as far as I'm concerned, you've gotten a bad shake. The worst deal ever wasn't what you got from Steve Case and AOL, but the one Yahoo didn't get from anyone.

  • Why There Is No President Klein in Garfield at Large on 04/04/2016

    Never does the outrage fail to outrage. Never do the media have the self control not to be manipulated. Because who can resist a conflagration?

  • Fairy Dust in Garfield at Large on 03/28/2016

    The IAB Technology Laboratory today released a new, two-part Augmented Reality solution for publishers to persuade users to stop deploying ad blockers. First, the dual solution turns the page on the acronym DEAL, unveiled three weeks ago, just as it then abandoned the previous formulation LEAD as a recommended approach for publishers to discourage ad blocking.

  • P.R. Wild Pitches: Spring Edition in Garfield at Large on 03/21/2016

    Since I last weighed in last fall to shame careless and the clueless publicists for indiscriminate nuisance pitching for the brands they're charging clients to build, I have received these huge, highly targeted scoops.

  • Revenue? Who Needs Revenue? in Garfield at Large on 03/14/2016

    In a world in which advertising will no longer cover the nut for publishers, there are two ways to keep the lights on. One is to find more revenue sources. The other is to pay less for content.

Comments by Bob All comments by Bob

  • Sex And The Smoking Gun by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 05/23/2016)

    She wasn't the first person to put career before self respect.Pretty easy to be self righteous when nobody is hitting on you or generally giving you thee creeps.

  • Why There Is No President Klein by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 04/04/2016)

    Deniis,Oh, right. How careless of me. I should have mentioned. It was at HARVARD.Bob

  • Averting The Apocalypse: JWT's 'Rape Guy' Resigns by Barbara Lippert (Mad Blog on 03/17/2016)

    I hope the litigation proceeds all the way to court, in which case we will see documentary evidence of systemic sexism, systemic denial, systemic stonewalling and (my guess) an evil strategy of personal destruction instead of apology and action.  This will prove for WPP to be pennywise and pound suicidal.  What I wouldn't give to see the chain of emails, but this is not an organization that makes imortant decisions from the middlle.WPP board, it's the 11th hour....do you know where your chairman is?

  • Top 10 Bedrock Principles Built On Marketing Sand by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 03/07/2016)

    Thanks, Michael PurselWhen someone says "the truth is" and follows it with a paranoid fantasy, he more or less makes my point for me.  Yikes.

  • And Somewhere Men Are Laughing, And Somewhere Children Shout by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 02/29/2016)

    Kurt,Because I'm not selling them anything, and not publicly traded,  so I'm free to express my convictions.Bob

  • God Save The Queen - And Proceed With Caution While Backing Up by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 02/23/2016)

    She's not MY frontrunner.  I'm not a Democrat.  It's just that the GOP has gotten particularly reactionary, irrational, obstructionist, Bible-thumping, anti-intellectual, dishonest, bigoted and generally loathesome.THere is not one of them -- not ONE  - who offers honest answers on immigration, climate, guns, taxation and civil liberties. When a career pragmatist technocrat politician with her own dubious relationship with the truth looks like a savior, it is a frightening time for the Republic.

  • Demented by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 02/08/2016)

    David Ezrati: Do a Twitter search of "Audi" and "Alzheimers."  Then recalculate. Also, there is only one "e" in "judgment."

  • Demented by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 02/08/2016)

    It simply amazes me that most of these response are about what "I"  -- that is, the commenter -- took from the ad.  And therein one of the greatest problems with advertising. Who gives a shit what you think? If you know that many, many people will see it another way, an upsetting way, an explotative way, a trivializing way, whether you personally like it or see it differently is utterly inconsequential.  100 million people watch the Super Bowl.  If only 1% see the character as deeply depressed or suffering from Alzheimers, and have lived through that agony, that's 1 million people who had a reason to be very upset Sunday.  And I promise you, if based on nothing but twitter, it's far more than 1%.  You people are not artists, or journalists.  You are advertisers and their agents, and you have responsibility to both the larger audience and your brand.  Yes, there's always someone looking to be offended. I'm not speaking of that. It's sometimes ok, in communicating with the many, to offend the few.  But is is NEVER OK to offend, insult, sadden or frighten the many in order to impress a few.This is lost on so many ad people, and has been as long as I've been scrutinizing advertising. Astonishing. And depressing. And disgusting. Not to mention rude, arrogant, juvenile and irresponsible.  

  • Demented by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 02/08/2016)

    To Diane Cook-Tench:  The first direct quote from you is utterly ignorant of a critic's role and also insulting, accusing me of ginning up a controversey to sell zeros and ones.  When you write "I understand," you are in error. The second is merely insulting. I;m not telling kids to get off my lawn. I'm calling out an advertiser for being insensitive and exploitative. And I'm not alone.  By the way, I've been a grumpy old man for 30 years. Controversy is needed to create interest and views. While I understand that you have to serve MediaPost and yourself, you needed to pick a true controversy. This ad's just not one. It’s a real stretch to connect it to Alzheimer’s patientsWhile I feel blessed to include many industry icons as friends, there's a thing happening in my social media streams. I call it "Grumpy Old Men Syndrome".It's generally most prevalent on Facebook, a platform used by retired ad guys who don't always understand today’s connected lifestyle. They love to complain about the ads seen during a big TV event. "Ads just aren’t as creative as they used to be." i.e. when they were active.Baloney, there’s always been a range of creative executions from bad to outstanding. There are more good ideas and cool creative media campaigns today than ever before. Its just not single ads. Instead, it’s more like magazine campaigns. A steady stream of content that is cool and interesting. People choose to follow it or not just as magazine subscribers do. 

  • Unholy And Undone by Bob Garfield (Garfield at Large on 12/28/2015)

    oh, mercy you miss the point. I am pulling a cheney by commenting favorably on events i (possibly) influenced.by the way, even if there were actual evidence of hillary lying -- versus being wrong for 24 hours about a chaotic but isolated violent event -- that isn't even in the same realm of lying to the world to invent a war that killed hundreds of thousands of human beings, among them thousands of Americans, at a cost of $1 trillion, and left us with ISIS.

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