Here’s a fun stunt from the West Coast: one week ago, a Berkeley man made local headlines by leaving a typed message for an unfriendly neighbor who had been stealing his daily copy of The Wall Street Journal “so many times over so many years,” promising to allow him to read it every day as long as he returned it “around 10 or 11 the same morning.”
The Berkeley paper later identified that man as Richard Nagler, who clarified that he subscribes to the WSJ because of “the quality of its journalism” despite finding its various editorial stances “reprehensible.” He also told reporters that his note (and the security camera he installed to go along with it) worked:
“I have gotten the WSJ every day since the note went up.”
Once the story began getting more attention, The&Partnership, which works with the WSJ, saw an opportunity for its client. The agency convinced the paper’s Editor in Chief Gerard Baker to write two notes — one for Nagler and one for the thief.
Here’s a pic of client reps placing the notes on the door in question (image via Berkeleyside):
…and here are the notes as shared by Baker:
— Gerard Baker (@gerardtbaker) March 25, 2015
We do like the stunt and the “subscribe don’t steal” URL, though we wonder why Baker chose not to defend his own paper’s “reprehensible” op-eds…