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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

TRADITION — Established in 1979, the Moosemen hold the distinction of being NMUs oldest campus club.
Moosemen rugby embracing tradition with new season underway
Caden SierraSeptember 22, 2023

Super Bowl ads not so super after all

Unless you are living under a rock, you know that Super Bowl Sunday is only a few days away. What you may not know, however, is that the festivities began last Saturday and will continue non-stop until the last light is turned out after the game on Sunday.

This all sounds like fun and games, until you realize that the same NFL organization that is spending tens of millions of dollars to host this weeklong celebration of American decadence is the same NFL organization that less than two months ago laid off 10 percent of the employees at its headquarters.

Not only is the NFL still having their usual week long festivities in the midst of a national economic downturn, they are actually expanding it. New this year is the “NFL Experience,” a 200,000 square foot high-tech playground that is supposed to let fans experience what it is like to play for an NFL team. The project was estimated to have cost the NFL millions — millions of dollars that could have, and should have, been used to keep those laid-off workers employed. Instead the NFL decided to put its consumers above its own employees and made a distinct statement to those workers: Our playground is more important than your livelihood.

This trend of executives splurging while simultaneously laying off working class Americans isn’t limited to the world of sports. Throughout the last six months we have seen CEOs from several companies laying off workers or going before congress asking for a 100-some billion dollar bailout, all while refusing to cut back themselves.

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The Super Bowl splurging isn’t limited to the NFL itself. This year a 30 second advertisement will cost a company $3 million. That comes out to about $100,000 a second – or the annual average salary of about two skilled workers.

Among the companies spending millions on Super Bowl ads are Coca-Cola, Pepsi and General Motors. All three of these companies have had to lay off workers in the past year because of what has been described as “a lack of profitable income.” An easy way for any of these companies to save $3 million or more, (depending on how many ads they run and what the production cost is) would be to cut back on Super Bowl advertising. Because, lets face it, no one is going to forget about Coca Cola or Pepsi if we go an entire football game without seeing one of their commercials.

Several companies have bucked this trend. One such company is Miller Brewing. Instead of taking out a full 30 second ad for their High life brand of beer, the company decided it was in their best interest to cut back their expenses and take out a 1 second ad. Miller spokesperson Kevin Oglesby explained that “Miller High Life is all about high quality and great value, so it wouldn’t make sense for this brand to pay $3 million for a 30-second ad. Just like our consumers, High Life strives to make smart choices. One second should be plenty of time to remind viewers that Miller High Life is common sense in a bottle.”

Another company to cut back is delivery service FedEx, which decided not to take out a Super Bowl ad for the first time in decades. The company released a statement saying they felt it was inappropriate to spend millions of dollars on advertising during the economic recession.

While Miller’s decision to cut back their advertising budget for the Super Bowl may just be a public relations scheme, Oglesby is correct when he says that the company is making smart choices.

So, when you are watching the glitzy Super Bowl ads this weekend, pay attention to what businesses you’re supporting. Before you go out and buy that 2-liter of Coke or 12-pack of Budweiser, give a few minutes of thought to the people who had to be laid off in order to pay for those ads.

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