Sunday, November 18, 2007

Advertising: When You Only Want to Tell One Side of the Story

Joseph H. Durano, pictured here, has a tough job. As the Secretary of the Department of Tourism for the Philippines, he has to sell the Philippines as a tourist destination. So he does the obvious: golf, night life, beaches, lush landscapes, water sports and native culture.

Let's not forget Adventure - with a capital A.

From Lonely Planet:

  • The best time to travel is in the typhoon off-season from December to the middle of May.
  • Travelers are advised to avoid most of Mindanao, an island group in the southern Philippines, especially the Zamboanga peninsula, Basilan, Tawi-Tawi and the Sulu archipelago, where ethnic and religious animosities fuel ongoing violence.

From the State Department:

  • The Department urges Americans contemplating travel to the Philippines to carefully consider the risks to their safety and security, including those due to terrorism.
  • Kidnap-for-ransom gangs operate in the Philippines. Many people who reside in or visit areas that face terrorist threats, such as in Mindanao, travel with their own security force, avoid an obvious presence, or both.
I think maybe Durano's job is too wide-open. He has to make the whole country look like a tourist destination, when really, only a few places are. 7,107 islands is a fact, but only 800 of those are inhabited, and of those, you'd only want to visit a couple.

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  • It's an interesting descriptor for the business (Advertising is when you only want to tell one side of the story,) but I think maybe it better applies to PR. Telling one side of the story is advertising on a good day. The ideal of journalism is to tell both sides of the story, or that was the ideal. Advertising sometimes just invents the story or suggests enough elements for us to conjure our own. Now in this case, if one goes to the Philippines and gets beheaded, is there a case for false advertising?

    By Anonymous captain flummox, at November 18, 2007 at 11:57 AM  

  • captain,

    the travel brochures most likely have explicit disclaimers protecting durano from liabilities associated with typhoons and terrorist beheadings. travelers are encouraged to carefully read the fine print.

    By Blogger HighJive, at November 18, 2007 at 8:19 PM  

  • “Come for the sunsets–stay for the ransom.”

    By Blogger Make the logo bigger, at November 19, 2007 at 1:34 AM  

  • What happens in the Philippines, stays in the Philippines. Until you pay the ransom in full.

    By Blogger HighJive, at November 19, 2007 at 2:37 AM  

  • just curious, have you been there, or are you basing this from 1 incident and 2 sites?

    By Blogger Twilight Kid, at November 19, 2007 at 3:25 PM  

  • Twilight Kid:

    Lonely Planet and the State Department are not exactly unreliable websites. I have also read books that suggest the Philippines aren't exactly a travel destination in the traditional sense. If you have evidence to the contrary, great. Point us to a website instead of blogger profile no one can view.

    By Blogger Jetpacks, at November 19, 2007 at 5:13 PM  

  • Why get testy? I was simply curious to find out what you based your
    post on. My info is not from a site, just from spending time there -
    sometimes that is better than the web...

    By Blogger Twilight Kid, at November 19, 2007 at 5:19 PM  

  • I'm sure if you had a good guide and some foreknowledge of the place, it'd be quite fine and fun.

    Sorry for the testiness, but my experience has been that comments that begin "just curious" are going to be sarcastic.

    By Blogger Jetpacks, at November 19, 2007 at 5:25 PM  

  • btw - I really do like your blog - I was just curious on this post, so don't think I am a hater - did not even realize I had a blogger profile attached to my gmail account. When I do blog it is here - much neglected and not as robust as yours.

    its actually a beautiful country w/ friendly people - but even the locals said that Mindanao can be rough for Americans.

    By Blogger Twilight Kid, at November 19, 2007 at 5:32 PM  

  • just curious, my comments have never started with "just curious," yet have often been sarcastic. do i owe you some sort of apology?

    By Blogger HighJive, at November 19, 2007 at 7:09 PM  

  • High Jive: It's just like when someone says "No offense" to start a sentence, you know you're about to be offended.

    As for your sarcasm, no apology needed. And I should chill on the testiness, as Twilight Kid says. After all, I'm one of the most sarcastic bastards I know.

    By Blogger Jetpacks, at November 20, 2007 at 7:52 AM  

  • no offense, but you're one of the most sarcastic bastards i know too.

    By Blogger HighJive, at November 20, 2007 at 3:27 PM  

  • HJ:

    I'm rubber and you're glue...whatever you say ...bounces....something

    shut up

    By Blogger Jetpacks, at November 20, 2007 at 3:48 PM  

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