Clockwork Orange-Style Advertising on the Pike

1205937111We urban dwellers have precious few moments of quiet in our day. T riders endure high-decibel conversations while they commute into work. Our coworker’s phone always rings at the precise moment that our train of thought is most easily derailed.

The one place we had some respite from the cacophony of urban life is in our cars. And now a new company wants to take that away from us as well.

Gas Station TV has installed small flat-screen televisions on gas pumps at Turnpike service area stations. The screens plays a 4-minute loop of news headlines and advertisements while commuters fill up. The company calls it advertising for a “captive audience.”

It sounds like our idea of hell.

Here, there is no way to switch channels or even adjust the volume. Here, the audience is captive and probably bored. Here, advertisers hawking soda have potential customers right where they want them: a short walk away from a minimart selling their product.

Unlike the colossal failure that was T Radio, this isn’t an agency that has to at least pretend to be open to complaints from the public. So be ready to use the skills you’ve developed tuning out the televisions at the Shaw’s checkout line while you’re at the pump.