The oldest trick in the book?

This week’s media analysis delves into ways the “church-and-state” divide between news and advertising will further erode as the industry faces economic realities. The...

This week’s media analysis delves into ways the “church-and-state” divide between news and advertising will further erode as the industry faces economic realities. The two recent Los Angeles Times advertorials have accelerated the conversation surrounding “creative” or “innovative” advertising, but not everybody agrees with those terms. Among those not featured in this week’s analysis is Geneva Overholser, director of USC’s Annenberg School of Journalism. She calls advertorials “the oldest trick in the book" and adds:
This is not creative or innovative – it’s caving. Why do something that fundamentally trades on deception? If they didn’t believe it would be more credible to make [the ads] look like editorial content, then why did they do it? This was bad advertising. It was aesthetically ugly as can be – not creative and definitely not progressive. Editors have fought this for years, not because they are prissy but because they don’t want their readers fooled.

For more perspectives on advertorials, see the analysis.

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