Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The trouble with 'creatives'

Isaac Newton understood physics.

For instance, his Third Law of Motion: "To every action there is an equal and opposite reaction."

Isaac Newton also understood public relations. He didn't know it, but he did.

Take Newton's law, apply it to human nature and you get the First Law of Public Relations: "To every moronic action, there is an equal and opposite moronic reaction. Only more so."

I just made that up, but it's true. Look, I can even provide sociological proofs:

THAT'S RIGHT, the proprietor of a blog dedicated to making fun of Nebraska's new license-plate design (top of post) thought it would be a fine thing to run some nimrod's idea (above) of social commentary.

"Duuuuude! I just put the new Nebraska license plate on a picture of a car mowing down a bunch of bicyclists! Bitchin'! Heh! heheheh! Heh heh heheheheh!"

And let's not show the Photoshop creation of a cow blowtorching the new plate with an acetylene fart, OK?

I don't know about you, but juvenile buffoonery by the state's "creatives" is making that proposed cold sore for Nebraska bumpers start to grow on me a little. I guess the
Official Nebraska License Plate Reactions Website is producing yet another equal and opposite reaction by causing me to have sympathy for people mucking up our automobiles with a truly wretched piece of tin.

NEBRASKA'S "design community" has made much hay . . . I'm sorry, does that choice of words go too much against the hip, now, happening and progressive image we're supposed to be projecting as Nebraskans? We mustn't embrace our inner hick, now.

Let's try this. The state's "design community" has protested vociferously the poor choices put before the readers Nebraskans, and have cited such mediocrity as why license-plate design never should be left to amateurs.

Of course, the winning design was a "professional" product, but that's not important now. Move along, nothing to see here. Thank you, come again!

No, what's important now is for outraged designers to follow their own advice. If they want to overturn a bad decision by the Department of Motor Vehicles, they need to hire a professional. Public-relations amateurs like themselves will just screw it up.

They may know design, but that doesn't mean they know squat about A) writing, or B) how to make friends and influence people. I'm not a PR professional, but I can tell them the first step for free -- quit promoting juvenile idiocy like the Official Nebraska License Plate Reactions Website, then quickly shove to the margins all those "creatives" with far more time on their hands than common sense . . . or good taste.

Despite evidence to the contrary, I don't think "creative" and "grown-ups" have to be mutually exclusive concepts.

There seems to be some good information -- at least at a glance -- on the site, where the creator contends there's no way the DMV could know pranksters didn't punk the vote. A PR professional could find independent computer scientists to test that hypothesis and then, if correct, ram it down the state's throat.

Complete with press releases, interview opportunities, a press conference and a slick website.

PR professionals would get straight information to the press, then help reporters help "the design community" yell "rat."

Or, the state's "creatives" could just continue to throw a hissy fit for free. But in that case, they'd better zip it about the horrors of amateurism as they drive around with those ugly-ass license plates.

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