Friday, February 04, 2011

RBS and the President of the MCC’s buttocks

Back in 2005 I wrote a House Points column about, amongst other things, my experience of living without a television for several years. That column went on:
When I got one again in 2000 the programmes and advertisements had changed. There were lots of people from ethnic minorities on screen, the view of family life offered was uniformly negative and advertising logos had invaded the world of sport.

People think the cricket authorities are stuffy, but really they are the most shamelessly commercial administrators of all. There are now logos on the players' clothing and painted on the field of play. For the right price you could probably get your company's slogan tattooed on the President of the MCC's buttocks.
The same holds true of rugby union in Britain. From all that I have seen, in the USA (where they are supposed to be so much more money-driven than we are) sports fields are free of this sort of commercialism.

Tonight's international in Cardiff, where England won a tense victory over Wales, even had the RBS logo plastered over the centre of the pitch. Was this really a good idea? The bank's extravagant sports sponsorship programme is a potent symbol of the regime of Sir Fred Goodwin that led the bank to ruin with annual losses of £28bn. I am not sure rugby is doing a favour by reminding us of that throughout the game.

And if rugby needs the money so much, can't the ground authorities at least find a way of putting the logo on to the grass that does not cover the players in blue paint and make them look ridiculous?

Later. In the Super Bowl final the logo on the field was that of the National Football League itself.


Nick said...

"in the USA sports fields are free of this sort of commercialism"

A quick look at tells me those fields are called FedEx Field, Invesco Field, Lincoln Financial Field, EverBank Field, LP Field, Ford Field, Mall of America Field...and Soldier Field, which is the only field not to have sold its name to the highest bidder.

Jonathan Calder said...

As will be clear to anyone who reads the whole thing, this post is about painting logos on the pitch.

Nick said...

I know, I was just pointing out that are other forms of commercialism that are much more rampant in American sports than they are here.