1. Clear Channel Takes 'Dead' Aim on Target Audience
It looks like somebody at Clear Channel Communications ( CCO) needs some brainnnsss. The company recently came under fire for posting a giant advertisement for the zombie-themed television program "The Walking Dead" on the outside wall of a funeral parlor in the town of Consett in England. Oh, the irony. "The Walking Dead" is about a small group of survivors in a zombie apocalypse. It airs on AMC, which is owned by Cablevision's ( CVC) Rainbow Media, in the U.S., and on News Corp.'s FX channel in the U.K. Somehow, no one at Clear Channel realized that posting a giant ad for a show about zombies on a funeral parlor might be a bad idea. Apparently the company even promised the funeral parlor that the featured advert wouldn't be insensitive in any way. "It is disappointing that we were not consulted as this advert could cause unnecessary distress," the U.K.'s Daily Mail quoted a spokesman for Co-operative Funeralcare as saying. "When the billboard site was erected, we were assured that no insensitive adverts would be featured." One nearby resident told the Daily Mail that while some people might find the irony in the ad's placement amusing, many could be easily offended. "There must be somewhere else they could put it that would have shown a degree of insight and sensitivity." Susan Jones from the nearby Willow Burn Hospice was quoted as saying. "Emotions can be pretty raw when people are recently bereaved." Clear Channel put out a statement on the mistake, apologizing for its inappropriate placement. "Clear Channel apologizes for any offense caused by the unfortunate juxtaposition of this advertisement, which was certainly not intended," a company spokesman said. "We arranged to have it removed right away and it has since come down."