31 January 2012

Stealth Ads

Chances are, you've seen signs like this, attached to lampposts in your neighborhood, or some other neighborhood. Usually they are civic banners that say something like "Welcome to Ridgewood" or "Shop Sunnyside" or some such boosterish message.

This sign, along with four others, recently appears on Columbia Street in Brooklyn on the blocks between Carroll and Summit. But they don't say "Columbia Shopping District" or "Up with Columbia Heights Waterfront District." No, they appear to be advertisements for Preferred Health Partners, a collection of Brooklyn-based doctors' collectives.

So what's happened here, it seems, is the City has sold the rights to Columbia's lampposts to the highest bidder, marring the area by turning the street into an ad canyon not much different from a billboard-strewn highway. We already have ads on the sides of the ugly Cemusa bus non-shelters. But I find these much more oppressive. Walking down Columbia, it's impossible not to notice them. I know lamppost banners are nothing new. But that doesn't mean I have to like them.


bigmissfrenchie said...

They're on Atlantic Avenue too, I think all the way up to 4th Avenue. Preferred is located at Bond and Atlantic.

dash said...

ha. I've probably noticed them because they look familiar now that you mention it. But I wouldn't have been able to tell you where I had seen them. They're that subtle- they actually resemble the ads for public health care (health plus?) that I've seen on the subway. Scary.