Imaginary (anti) brands

Posted by Rob Walker on April 20, 2010
Posted Under: Imaginary Brands,Semiotic Disobedience

PSFK points out these recent fake products evidently placed in retail locations by TrustoCorp. An example of shopdropping, a form of semiotic disobedience discussed earlier on this site here and here (and also here, when shopdropping was, oddly, picked up as an alleged “trend” by a murketer). Some of these are fun, and an interesting example of using imaginary brands in the real world.

Further diversion may be found at MKTG Tumblr, and the Consumed Facebook page.

Reader Comments

I want to fawn over the brilliant and playful subversiveness of this project, but I’m unclear as to what exactly is being subverted. If the fake brands are there as a form of ontological terrorism (a la Hakim Bey) to jolt people out of their routine stupor, then I say “Carry on, good chaps.”

If they were placed as a sort of vicious and holier-than-thou “commentary” with a totally vague target (a la Adbusters), then I say “What’s your point?”

Written By Justin on April 21st, 2010 @ 9:41 am

Yes, I like some of these more than others — Glossy Veneer and Bankos are admirable. The Bulimia thing I’m not so into, and I don’t exactly get the nose job in a can, although on some level it’s funny. I think I’m in “stand by” mode to try to figure out what it is that TrustCo is up to. Talent there for sure; to what end, dunno.

Written By Rob Walker on April 22nd, 2010 @ 5:41 pm
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