Lasn Admits Defeat. Turns To Shoe Biz For Answers.

from Inc.: But here’s the thing about the guerrilla information war that Kalle Lasn and his rotating crew of two dozen or so employees at Adbusters were fighting: “We were losing,” he admits. While the Adbusters Media Foundation has built enough of an audience to keep it out of the red — the magazine sells for $7.95 an issue and has international circulation of 120,000, according to Lasn — it has had little success getting its incendiary anti-ads into any mainstream venue. So rather than just attack Nike — although, as we’ll see, that’s still his obsession — Adbusters would produce a rival shoe of its own, with environmentally friendly materials and ethical labor. Like many a brand before it, Blackspot would be designed to stand for big ideas: in this case, socially minded entrepreneurialism and grass-roots capitalism. “And, of course, coming up with an antilogo ,” Lasn proclaims, sounding excited, as he often does, “we’re moving from whining into action.”
Here’s my translation, “Buy my shoes brother. They’re totally organic. Every step you take will be another step forward for the earth and its people.”



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.