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Saturday, September 30, 2006

Billboards billboards everywhere!

People are still cleaning the mess left by typhoon Milenyo. There are still so many fallen trees being cut so sites could be cleared, there are several piles of leaves and branches awaiting to be hauled by the garbage collectors, they have set aside the cut-up trunks for more useful use. Many of the billboard canvas are still rolled down, it may take a few days before all of them are rolled up again to show the advertisements.

I’m amazed at the volume of billboards we have here in Metro Manila. Everywhere you look in major thoroughfares, there’s one that would catch your eyes… each outsizing the other and they are not just one billboard per location but could be tons of billboards, one of top of another.

Our company also uses billboards as one form of advertisement and it costs big time, not just for the monthly rental of the billboard site but including the talent fee, agency fee and processing fee (color layouts for the tarpaulins to be used) etc… etc… the talent fee for endorsers could run up to millions just for a few hours of posing.. gosh you wish you were a star too and earn so much just for a few hours of pose!

But it is not only the “star endorsers” that benefit from the billboard boom. The Ad agency earns a hefty commission and so do those Billboard middle men that looks for good sites and build those steel frames to rent. I’ve also seen building owners earn something from idle places (mostly on top of their buidlings) and even noted someone in our area who was able to construct a four storey building from the advances paid by the middle men.

Frankly, I agree with MMDA chairman Bayani Fernando on the safety (rather NON-safety) of most billboard structures. It could be scary looking at those steel frames. Some really seem (hmmm actually ARE) dangerous as proven by the accident that happened in Estrella. You wonder why they have to put those steel structures so high and so big! The one is Guadalupe is just sooooo big I wonder what went inside the mind of the one who constructed it. Of course size does matter especially when there are just so many of them lined up together. Still it could be overwhelming that sometimes you just want to close your eyes or focus on something else to get some rest from them!

But I don’t think billboard will be gone soon even with the storm currently brewing over it. Though it is costly to set up a billboard, the price is still LOTS cheaper compared to the neon signs. In addition, Billboards look the same in day time and night time (of course provided there is lighting that goes with the contract) unlike neon signs that are only attractive at night. I don’t think there are still neon light advertisements in our major roads today but I do remember enjoying some ads before. In the Eighties and Nineties EDSA was lined up with several of those neon signs. I particularly liked the Seven up neon sign along Boni Ave., with Fido Dido and a glass being filled first by an ice then by the Seven up, I think there were even bubbles in that sign. Just looking at it I can actually imagine the clicking sound of the ice, the pouring sound of liquid and the bubbles that comes afterward. It was one animated neon sign even if the only colors it had were white and green.

Anyway back to the billboards, I think they should do something to regulate the structures and SOON. It is a good form of advertisement but people’s safety should always be foremost!


Blogger Senor Enrique said...

I agree, Beth, there ought to be more stringent regulations concerning these billboards.

Neon signs I love and they add wonders in the nighttime skyline.

1:10 PM  
Blogger Sef said...

Billboards should be banned from the Metro... No one benefits from it, except the advertisers...

2:08 PM  

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