What’s Next for Advertising?
Madison Ave., New York City. (Photo: Flickr/mikebitton)

Madison Ave., New York City. (Photo: Flickr/mikebitton)

For at least half a century, Americans lived in a world hugely shaped and surrounded by Madison Avenue and a vast universe of traditional advertising.

Love it or hate it, a whole cosmos of ads floated TV, newspapers, magazines, and — relentlessly — our view of the world and the products in it.

Now, that universe is collapsing. Advertising as we’ve known it is disintegrating. In its place, bloggers and tweets and buzz agents and web code that tracks your every breath and desire.

This hour, On Point: After advertising — and the struggle over what comes next.

You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.


Joining us from San Francisco is Ryan Singel, a reporter at Wired magazine. He has covered the new FTC ruling on bloggers, as well as Internet civil liberties and privacy issues.

From Sacramento, Calif., we’re joined by Christine Young, a “mommy blogger” and founder of the site From Dates to Diapers, and Beyond! She’s a member of a group organized by Wal-Mart to review products, and she reviews Johnson & Johnson baby products on YouTube.

Joining us from Washington is James Othmer, former creative director at advertising giant Young & Rubicam. His new book is “Adland: Searching for the Meaning of Life on a Branded Planet.”  Read an excerpt here.  He wrote an op-ed piece for The Washington Post in August headlined, “Skip Past the Ads, But You’re Still Being Sold.”

Also from Washington we’re joined by Bob Garfield, host of NPR’s On The Media. An advertising critic and editor-at-large at Advertising Age for 24 years, he’s the author of “The Chaos Scenario” (published on the Kindle in July and available in print now). He argues that traditional advertising is dead and that we are entering a scary new post-advertising age. You can download the first three chapters at the book’s blog.

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