Category Archives: Mission 3: Honest Marketing

Mission 3 Report: Kaplan

[Submitted by RTS, Washington D.C.]

I’d made a poster a while back but wanted to wait until I had some field reports of the posters in action. Now, I have a great public art coup–getting my poster into the career center posting board!


Mission 3 Report: An Ad Update

[Report by Bengar]

I made a flyer about Chase Bank last week. [See here.] I posted them at the end of the week and came back this week to take pictures of any that remained. Many of the posters were still up and prominently displayed in the middle of the bulletin boards where I posted them.

Mission 3 Report: An Enriching Experience…

… at least for those on the receiving end of my 40K tuition!

College is supposed to be a time of growth in which we students can realize our full academic potentials and secure promising futures, right? Right? RIGHT? Will somebody please convince me!!!

[Submitted by Radish, Providence, RI]

Mission 3 Report: Chase Bank

Mission Report from Bengar:

“I also thought I’d do some truth in advertising for my favorite bank, Chase, which has made the news recently for locking someone in their own home, even though the person was not in foreclosure.”

“Pictures of the flyers in action still to come.”

Mission 3 Report: The American Way

[Submitted by Adam Smith, outer-space]

Several years ago I signed up for Bank of America’s online notification system. They told me that all notifications would be delivered to me electronically instead of to my official address which, since I haven’t lived at home in nearly a decade, seemed to make sense. Unfortunately, it didn’t pan out as well as they’d advertised.

Unwittingly, I overdrew on my checking account. Then I withdrew again. And again… Unfortunately I don’t check my account balance daily so by the time I noticed, I was thoroughly screwed. For every purchase I’d made in the red, they’d slapped me with a $37.50 fee. $4.51 at CVS,$37.50 fee. $12.37 at Peking Garden, $37.50. The list goes on. Total damage exceeded $300.

It wasn’t as if I didn’t have the funds to justify my spending. In fact, at the time I had several thousand dollars stagnating in my savings account, which was also through Bank of America. I’d thought I’d transferred a couple of hundred more from my savings account to my checking account but apparently I hadn’t.

Had Bank of America notified me of my mistake electronically, I would have been able to remedy it right away and only faced one $37.50 fee. Instead, they sent notification exclusively to my physical address. It took the letter several days to arrive. Pretty pathetic but, in my case, it didn’t matter, because I didn’t live at home. Since my parents generally throw all my mail unread in a pile for me to sift through whenever I visit, I wouldn’t have seen it for months. It was lucky I checked my balance when I did, or I’d probably be in jail now, with debt exceeding the GDPs of many African nations.

Well, I quickly learned my lesson, and through threat of legal action managed to get a fraction of the fees back, but I was still left with a bitter taste in my mouth.

And, recently, I narrowly evaded another brutal mugging. This time Bank of America tried (feebly) to notify me that because I haven’t been a student for quite some time, I’m no longer eligible for student discounts and as a result they would start charging me monthly service fees unless I had sufficiently high funds in my checking account, which I didn’t. Do you think they sent this notification to me electronically? HELL NO! Luckily, I’d instructed my parents to read any mail addressed to me from Bank of America, and they warned me in time so that with a little juggling between my accounts, I was able to get my checking account narrowly over the limit while maintaining my savings account at a balance sufficiently high to escape racking up fees on it.

The work of art I’ve created in response is farily simple. It’s a modified version of an ad released by Bank of America promoting its dysfunctional online notification system:

You can view the original advertisement here.

I printed out a few copies of my work and left them lying around near ATMs. I also plan to take out a facebook ad, although I’ll have to wait ’til my next paycheck for fear of dragging my account just below the limiting, and having to forfeit some of my hard earned dinero to the Evil Empire.

Mission 3: Honest Marketing


Is there a company or institution that has treated you unfairly or annoys you? Return the favor by advertising for them. The only caveat is that you must be totally honest in your advertisement.

Example: “King Laundry: Half our machines are broken. The others work OK.”

Feel free to get creative and use words and images as you see fit. After you’ve designed your ad, post it in a place where people will see it. Like any effective advertisement, it should specifically target potential clients, patrons, or consumers. For instance, if you’ve designed a brutally honest poster about King Laundry, you might choose to post it on a telephone pole in the laundromat parking lot. You could also post your ad digitally. For instance, if you don’t mind spending a few bucks, you could take out a facebook ad and use relevant keywords to make sure your message reaches the right people.

Send us documentation of your efforts and be sure to explain your message. Accounts of the source of your frustration (how the company wronged you) are appreciated.

Finally, enjoy the sweet taste of justice served!