The New York State Lottery has a new ad campaign that I find extremely offensive, and I don’t even play the lottery. Gordon Medinica and Gardner Gumey are the names of the guys upstairs at the NY State Lottery. They need to know that everybody that rides the subway is not submissive to dumbing it down.
The semiotics of this ad is wrong on so many levels. Unfortunately those for whom it’s intended will be oblivious to the blatant insult that’s smacking them in the face. Even worse, there are many that actually will have a clue to the insult, and still allow themselves to be taken in.
“There’s a sucker born every minute,” said the great PT Barnum nearly 150 years ago, and that approach to advertising still exists today. Let’s break it down just a tad, as we could write a short book on all that’s wrong with it. “Drink Soda, Burp Champagne” simply says: Hey you buying that Coke, Pepsi or Welch’s grape soda, right after you grab your cheese puffs and pack of smokes, grab a lottery ticket, ya might get lucky. Let me put a different way: Listen you poor schlub, you subway rider, you’re never gonna be a millionaire working that job you’re headed off to, so the next time you’re succumbing to buying some crap that’s bad for your health, you might as well immerse deeper in your expendable life and contribute to the ever prospering dominant ruling class, believe the hype and buy this lottery ticket. After all, “Ya never know,” another slogan to the craftsmanship of the advertising of the New York State Lottery. Those that bought tickets, didn’t know, or at least didn’t or don’t really think about the pennies they spend adding up to dollars for a select few.
On the New York State Lottery web page, it boasts about how “The New York Lottery is the largest and most profitable state lottery in North America, generating a record $3 billion in education funding in the past year… Medenica (NY State Lottery CEO) had been a longtime executive at The New York Times Company, serving as a member of the Management Committee of the company, as head of strategic planning, corporate communications, and as Group Publisher of several of its sports magazines.” The profile of this man sounds very similar to that of another who’s currently asking for the support of the American people to accomplish his objectives. The bottom line is “They” don’t care about your objectives, “They” could give a damn about you drinking champagne, “They” just want you to add to their purse. I say “Just Say No.”
“$3 billion” raised through selling Lottery tickets. The Lottery was supposedly designed to help fund education, yet schools throughout New York in recent years have been closing and innumerable teachers have lost their jobs.