Reading The Pictures is dedicated to the analysis of news photos and media images.
July 6, 2006

Getting Played?


This billboard, touting the new white Sony PSP (Playstation Player), was recently launched in Amsterdam.

Other sites that have profiled this ad (example 1, 2) ask the question: Is it racist?

Perhaps the real question, though, is:  Are we being set up?

Isn’t “buzz marketing” supposed to be provocative enough to shake things up, but not past the point where the ad/message/image loses all ambiguity?  To the extent the ad attracts the attention of sites like this — whatever our determination about the image — isn’t that “a win” for the corporation, and the campaign?

More shots from the series here, here and here.

(hat tip: acm. images via

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