[Foundation-l] new site notice now ready

Tom Holden thomas.holden at gmail.com
Thu Dec 28 13:01:22 UTC 2006

To be honest, I don't think the logo is the issue. The word "Virgin" is a
sufficiently strong international brand that very little is added to it by
the addition of the logo. I also don't think the fact that it was their
charitable arm is relevant. The notice creates a clear coupling of the
"Virgin" brand and charitable giving, a coupling obviously designed to cast
the brand in a favourable light and so to persuade people to choose "Virgin"
products over the alternatives. Like it or not this is advertising.

The only way a gift from "Virgin" could have escaped this is if they had
agreed for their donation to be anonymous. If an organization refuses this
then it is merely further proof that they wanted advertising all along.

I do not want to get into whether having advertising on the site would be a
good or bad thing, but it is evident that there are many who think it is a
bad thing, and thus are justifiably annoyed by this. I also think that if we
are going to start having advertising on the site, we would do rather better
out of it if we let companies compete for it, rather than relying on the
inherently random factor of donations on a particular day. Do we have any
figures on how much an advert the size of the third line of the donation box
would go for across all Foundation sites? I have a hunch it would be in the
millions of dollars for 24 hours of exposure.

Tom Holden (cfp)

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