Lincoln Goes For Bike Messenger Street Cred Without Permission

squid_bike_messenger_lincoln.jpg

This Lincoln Navigator ad on page 41 of last Sunday's New York Times Magazine, according to bike racer, former bike messenger and Animal New York Publisher Bucky Turco, uses bike messenger's names, without permission, to promote the vehicle by attempting to create a relationship between messengers and SUVs.

Turco tells us, "Not only does this Lincoln ad hijack names of messengers who never gave permission, but just the idea that a NYC bike messengers having anything in common with a Lincoln is so far from reality. What is wrong with these idiots. Messengers hate cars. It's like using vegetarians to sell furs, it don't work. Who in the hell approved this creative?"

Bike messenger Squid, who is referred to in the ad, is a high ranking member of the NYBMA, and often referred to as "the bike messenger-general" never, according to Turco, OK'd the use of his name in this ad. Turco claims this is the second time Lincoln has run this type of creative, showing a bike messenger and then "throwing a few messenger names in with the copy for street cred."

Despite his image also appearing in an international version of the ad, without permission, a few months ago after declining to participate, Squid tells us he took no legal action. This time, he promises to do so.

by Steve Hall    May-25-05   Click to Comment   
Topic: Magazine   

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Comments



Comments

I think the bike industry should deny running this ad in their magazines...but I doubt that will happen. Car companies pump millions into the bicycle business each year in the form of ads (like this one) and team and event sponsorship. I've always found the cozy relationship between the bike industry and automakers kind of strange. In my opinion this countries obsession with cars (which turns into more pollution and congestion) is what makes it so tough to get more people to bike in the first place.

Posted by: Jonathan Maus on May 25, 2005 1:43 PM

Regardless of how lame it may seem to those of us who know something about bikes, this is really a very effective ad.

If you are a pudgy suburb-dweller (Lincoln's target market), the ad says to you that you can appropriate some of that urban cool by buying one of these lame-ass SUVs.

And if you think a bunch of underpaid messengers will be able to collect a dime out of GM in a lawsuit, you need to lay off the crack pipe.

Posted by: dave on May 25, 2005 2:35 PM

If the goal is punishment there is no need to get a dime for themselves. The NYC workers number 2000 and are well organized. They belong to an industry that numbers 12,000 workers in north america that is becoming better organized every year. The ad runs contrary to one of their main messeges (decrease dependenc on cars, relieve congestion) and purposefully slanders leaders of thier group with false and misleading use of thier names. Even their street names can be demonstrated to be "theirs" in an organized fashion for 10 years now. "Squid" in particular can show that that is how people like Lance Armstrong and Al Roker and former mayor Rudolph Giuliani know him on a one to one basis. No other person is going to be able to say "no not him Squid, me Squid" and make it hold up in court (or on the street).

Lincoln made a mistake, they have to pay lawyers like everyone else and since they didn't listen the first, well-documented time that they made this mistake they are going to have to pay their lawyers far more than that ad will ever generate whether they win or lose and lose is far more likely.

Mesengers may be small potatos on an industry scale the like that Lincoln weighs in on but they -can- collectively afford the representation neccesary to take them on.

Posted by: roderick on May 25, 2005 3:10 PM

With a tag line of "Live Well"....you must feel sorry for Lincoln. "Well" will never be defined because each person has their own definition. This is the laziest form of slogan because it's meaningless.

When Lincoln says "live well" they mean to stop buying their cars and get a bicycle and excersize you fat bastards. The legal threats mentioned is part of the game. They knew they would publicity for the legal action. Ooooooo its a fight between GM and FORD....come on Hyundai....where are your messengers.

Posted by: kab on May 25, 2005 10:58 PM

Basically there is two points here:

1. It shows how far off the mark some creatives are... I could just see the brainstorm now on Madison aveneue with coffees and donuts, a young wiry guys says, "Let's use bike messengers to sell cars," and everyone chimes in, "Yeah brilliant, great idea." Let's sell it to Lincoln. I belive Y and R did the creative so they are at almost just as much fault as Lincoln for OK'ing it. But my god people, this should be a poignant lesson, know the ramifications of the creative you choose.

2. Second point: Using Squid's name can actually damagae his credibility and ability to continue organizing events and such. Messengers from all over the world have sent him emails asking him why the hell he would OK his name in an ad. Not to mention he's instrumental in organizing one of the biggest messenger events ever in NYC on July 4th, the CMWC, more info on Www.NYBMA.Com. And he's also one of the founders of the NYBMA. So I hope Squid takes them to court and gets some money, or if Lincoln is reading this, the least you guys can do is donate money to the messengers 501.c3 and call it a day and apologize.

thats my 2 cents...

Posted by: bucky on May 26, 2005 9:00 AM

i wonder how many messengers have been hit and killed by lincolns.

Posted by: dusty bottoms on May 26, 2005 11:14 AM

Bucy Turco, the chubby source of this thread, claims to be a bike racer? That's a joke. He's as fat as John Goodman.

Posted by: breck on May 27, 2005 1:26 AM

Bucy Turco, the chubby source of this thread, claims to be a bike racer? That's a joke. He's as fat as John Goodman.

Posted by: breck on May 27, 2005 1:26 AM

Listen, Bucky is not as fat as John Goodman. He is very much a part of the bike racing scene in NYC , and I'd bet on him to kick your ass in a race tomorrow, whoever you are.

Posted by: owen on May 30, 2005 12:32 AM

Listen, Bucky is not as fat as John Goodman. He is very much a part of the bike racing scene in NYC , and I'd bet on him to kick your ass in a race tomorrow, whoever you are.Dialaphone
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Posted by: thecomparisons [TypeKey Profile Page] on October 18, 2007 12:52 PM

sten, Bucky is not as fat as John Goodman. He is very much a part of the bike racing scene in NYC , and I'd bet on him to kick your ass in a race tomorrow.Dialaphone
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Posted by: thecomparisons [TypeKey Profile Page] on October 18, 2007 1:02 PM





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