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Wednesday, 9 December 2015


It's the festive season again. When the pure Christmas spirit chokes under commercial impurities. The ingenuity of sellers goes into overdrive. As the vulnerability of buyers soars. Advertisements may not be innocent attempts to drive sales. And the media must strive not to facilitate the duping of consumers.

The advertisement above, appearing in Kenya's leading Sunday paper, looks legitimate from a casual glance.

Nearly all sales are often branded 'biggest' so that lie is harmless for now.

But one would expect some other 'falsehoods' to be at least cleverly disguised.

If you can't see what I'm talking about, look closely at all the products being advertised above. They are from one brand or manufacturer, right?

Wrong! The logo on one of the product is for a well known brand. But the description with the 20% price reduction alludes to a product of a different brand.

It's hard to believe this is an innocent mistake.

Actually, it's perhaps easier to be convinced this was an act of industrial sabotage, where one manufacturer intercepts a rival client's brief, and using its mole in the ad-agency, commits a nefarious product placement.

Quite a yarn admittedly.

The media then, ought to be more careful not to unwittingly propagate misleading information, embedded in published advertisements.

Unless...the media is part of a conspiracy against consumers.

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