March 25, 2010

More Bogus Toyota Nonsense Exposed

For the past few weeks we've been commenting on the hysterical, irresponsible post-recall Toyota reporting (full disclosure: Toyota's a client.)

Over a two-day period a few weeks ago, there was a frenzy of media delirium over two stories. First the guy in Southern California who claimed his Prius got up to 94 MPH on its own and had to be stopped by a highway patrolman. Second the story of a housekeeper in New York whose Prius supposedly took off on its own down the driveway and crashed through a stone wall.

We commented on the unlikeliness of the first story here last week in The Prius Balloon Boy, Prius Balloon Boy Update, and Crisis In The Newsroom.

Now the second story has proven to be bullshit. Both the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the police have declared that the Prius that went through the wall was due to driver error.

Of course, that didn't stop the press from publishing nonsense like this:
Toyota's global troubles have again hit close to home — and this time a car crash raises questions about problems with the Prius that go beyond just floor mats.
Harrison police said a 56-year-old woman smashed a 2005 Prius into a stone wall Tuesday after a stuck accelerator pedal "shot" the vehicle forward.

Joseph N. Leff, the owner of the Prius, said this morning that the family's housekeeper was driving the car. She suffered a knee injury and is out of the hospital.  She has driven the car many times, he said, and is "very competent" behind the wheel. .."It was clearly the automobile and not anything else," he said...
Yeah, right.

Of course, the miserable thing about this is that the press will give the vindication of Toyota about 1/1000 the attention they gave to the groundless accusations.

About Yesterday's Post
Yesterday we posted something called Gutless Ad Weasels.

It was a rant against self-hating ad people who have joined the "advertising is dead" mob. It was typified by a moronic video done by Saatchi & Saatchi, an ad agency.

In the course of ranting against traditional ad weenies, I probably insulted some nice interactive people who didn't deserve it. So, in fairness, let me re-post what I've said here previously:

"There are many smart, reasonable people working in digital media who do not make preposterous assertions; who do not think that social media is the answer to every question; who do not speak in dreadful, impenetrable jargon.

Yes, we are vociferous in denouncing people who tell us that
We would be equally vociferous in our denunciations if traditional media hustlers were saying that
  • digital marketing is dead
  • the web is dead
  • there is a new species of consumer who no longer share information about products
  • tv has “changed everything"
As a matter of fact, you will find that we have been just as voluble in our disdain for the "brand babbler" wing of traditional advertising as we are for cult members of The Divine Church of The Internet."

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