Media history, of a sort, was made in France yesterday, when the nation’s 30-year ban on supermarket TV advertising was scrapped. This should pump an additional $250 million into broadcast outlets this year. That money, no surprise, will come out of the coffers of regional newspapers. Critics decry the further erosion of French culture amid rampant consumerism. The first spots have already debuted, with an outfit called Système U hawking cheap washing powder shortly after midnight on Jan. 1. (Another spot from the company, that appears to be in more of a branding vein, is available at its site.) At the very least, such fare will make American tourists feel more at home, a sentiment that was no doubt top of mind when the ban was lifted—or maybe not. Can the singing and dancing truffles be far behind?
—Posted by David Gianatasio