The tragedy of the marketing commons, Part II

Maistream marketers continue to foul the waters in which we all have to fish.
According to Marketingfix, Activision, Elvis Costello’s label, and thesite.org have hired an agency to post fake endorsements of their products to Usenet; and “MP3.com, owned by Vivendi Universal, requires users to provide an e-mail address before they can listen to music. Then, without offering a choice or notice, the site adds that address to six mailing lists, including a music newsletter and one for “partner product announcements.”
Why so much lousy marketing. Well, it works. Over at Clickz, Rudy Grahn admits a lousy, annoying banner he tossed off in a couple of minutes continues to live on–because it works.
Meanwhile Bonzi’s deceptive, jittery web junk is omnipresent–because it works. According to DoubleClick, “rich media” ads are gaining share–because they work (ten times as well as regular banners).
Big companies like Verizon and SBC assert their right to sell your private information to whomever they please and assert that it’s not simply their right, but that they’re doing you a favor. And Sprint PCS distributes flyers to their customers labeled “Sharing your information and protecting your privacy” without appreciating the irony.
But even Sprint can appreciate the irony of a spammer drowning in junk snail mail. He’s going to have to opt out of every one of those lists.

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