Were Self-Driving Cars Really Developed Because of . . . Cheetos?

Well the Doc opened up the old mailbag today and here’s what poured out.

Dear Dr. Ads,

There I was, minding my own business and slogging through the Sunday New York Times (which – has anyone mentioned this to you? – really should trigger a federal subsidy) when I came across a full-page ad that seemed to attribute the emergence of automatic doors, self-driving cars, voice activated lights, audio books, automated dog feeders, and more to . . . Cheetos?

Is that true, Doc – Cheetos dust was the driving force behind all those innovations? There’s supposed to be truth in advertising, right?

– Orange You Glad I Asked?

Dear Orange You,

First of all, “truth in advertising” is largely overrated (and underutilized) as a concept, but it’s a really good poem by Andrea Cohen.

Truth in Advertising

by Andrea Cohen

If we’d moved her,
she’d still have ’em,

the ad for Acme
Moving says, with a photo

of Venus de Milo.
But who, intact,

would Venus be?
Some standard-issue

ingénue. Give me
a woman who’s lived

a little, who’s wrapped
her arms around the ages

and come up lacking: that’s
the stone that can move me.

As for Cheetos, here’s the Times ad in question.


That ad turns out to be part of a Cheetos Hands Free promotion that the snack food brand launched last week at SXSW, complete with a Hands Free House in Austin.

Here’s the teaser.

It was spokescritter Chester Cheetah, though, who drove that train on Twitter.

Oh, yeah – there’s also a sweepstakes.

The Doc’s diagnosis? An extremely hands-on campaign.

Ethics in Advertising? Really? What Are We, Oxymorons?

DrAdsforProfileWell the Doc opened up the old mailbag today and here’s what poured out.

Dear Dr. Ads,Unknown

So there I was, hanging out in the Great American Heartland, when I heard a rumor. It seems that The University of Missouri (my old stomping ground) has a group studying ETHICS in advertising.

What’s with that? Are they wasting time and money?

– Indiana hick

Dear Indiana,

As you have no reason to remember, the old Doc recently addressed the issue of truth in advertising.

So now we’re graduating to the bigger issue of advertising ethics?

Unbelievable. Literally.

Unknown-1But you’re right – the University of Missouri’s Donald W.Reynolds Journalism Institute has a whole Ethics section that addresses subjects like advertising and marketing.

So to your question: Are they wasting time and money?

Yes and no.

Their time. Not our money.

We’re pretty sure.