Nothing Gold Can Stay: Old Music Videos Now Getting the Retroactive Product Placement Treatment
(Paramount) In the age of the DVR and the Internet, when most traditional commercials can be ignored or fast-forwarded, advertisers need new ways to get your attention. But rather than come up with more creative, less obnoxious ads, their latest solution is to ruin the things you once loved with something called retroactive product placement, and it's coming to a music video near you.
What this boils down to is the practice of placing new ads in old content, and it's about to explode on YouTube now that Universal Music Group has made a deal with a pair of advertising companies, effectively opening their entire music video catalog up to "marketing opportunities" and "brand integration." But forget the buzzwords, this is what it looks like: Aloe Blacc's "The Man" video (original, right)Avicii's "Lay Me Down" video (original, upper) Far East Movement's "Rocketeer" video (original, upper)Subtle, right?
Frankly, I suppose it's no different than the kind of cross-promotion you get when you go to a sporting event or see the latest summer blockbuster, but there's something extra weird and sinister about altering already created content without the artists' consent. Plus, it's hideous. Just be sure to put me out of my misery if this ever becomes a reality:
(Side-by-side images via Rolling Stone)