This consumer-generated advertising thing is starting to get way too meta for me, now that for the third time this week, I’ve seen a story in a local newspaper about someone who has reached the finals in their lifelong dream of creating an ad for—fill in the blank—Doritos or the NFL or Chevrolet or … In the latest example, Kristin Dehnert, who, would seem to have a leg up in the Doritos competition since she’s a scouting and location manager by day, gushes, " … it’s so all-American—Doritos and the Super Bowl. Everybody has had orange fingers from Doritos." While true, we’re getting nervous that the next thing we know these people will start getting parades in their honor or something. And, you have to wonder, if any of this stuff is truly consumer-generated in what is meant by that term anymore—it’s more appropriate to think of many of these contests as being for up-and-coming creative execs who can now bypass the usual formalities of the hiring process and get notice quickly. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but is that really the voice of the consumer? I think not.
—Posted by Catharine P. Taylor