Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Vancouver 2010, where everyone is a consumer

These are some pictures from Burrard street and Granville street I took on Saturday while waiting for appointments at my work. It seems that all the store fronts and some hot dog stands are doing their best to take advantage of the olympic marketing angle.

The olympics are something I have always thought of in capitalist terms, go into any sky train and be bombarded with coke and mc donald ads. Or walk downtown everyone who shops at the Bay gets a reusable (bonus points for this)"Visa - Go World" bag (all points lost for being a walking advert). The message I take away from this is that I should drink coke, eat at mc donalds and spend lots of money on my credit card, im sorry what did that have to do with sports?

Anyways I left out the major sponsors because we have talked about it a bit before but also it makes me too angry. But also because the window displays are more creative and possibly ridiculous. Walking around downtown lots of things were being given out for free and many more things were being advertised for free on people. The windows of clothing stores showed "olympic spirit" by depicting people in lines for events, winter sports, canada's colours and gold medals out of various products.

A particular favorite olympic moment of the day was overhearing a couple talking while waiting in line for free vitamin water say "they dont have the flavor you like and its starting to rain, can we get out of here?" and the wife replying " just a few more minutes were almost at the front, besides its free". I understand that as a capitalist society we value things that are free because everything is ranked in value based on price. Yet it is so ridiculous to see people stand in the rain for over 15 minutes to get something they dont really want for free. Ah everyone is a consumer.


  1. Thanks for this, Megan. I hear the Japanodog stand on Burrard is doing a booming business.


  2. I asked the lady that owns the little corner shop thing at Granville skytrain station how business was (after waiting ten mins in line for a pack of gum)...and her answer was to make her mouth into a little "o", throw her hands up in the air, wave them around and scream.