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TEXAS TIDIES UP TRANSLATION

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When NuStats Research surveyed Spanish-dominant Texans about the popular "Don't Mess WIth Texas" slogan, it found that 88 percent of Hispanics are well aware of the phrase but only 61 percent know it relates to litter prevention.

The Austin, Texas, firm also learned that 95 percent of the general population knows about the slogan, and that 80 percent of English-dominant speakers and 78 percent of bilingual Latinos understand its purpose.

Knowing this, Tuerff-Davis EnviroMedia of Austin, in conjunction with San Antonio-based Creative Civilization, added a Spanish tagline to reinforce the slogan in its new Hispanic ad for the Texas Department of Transportation: "En Tejas no se tira basura," which translates to "Don't throw down trash in Texas."

In the spot that broke Friday on Spanish-language stations throughout the state, a carefree young Latino throws fast-food trash out of his car, only to get litter tossed right back by an oncoming driver. Why fast-food refuse? Food packaging is the top source of litter, said Tuerff-Davis principal Valerie Davis.