So we’ve been bombarded with advertisements to Buy Red products – red iPods, red phones, red underwear – what have you – the idea was that a couple of dollars from every “Red” product would be donated to the AIDS fund to help victims in Africa – Bono is on TV 24/7 espousing its cause of buying red and helping Aids victims in Africa – very admirable goal and all.

Only problem is – to raise the $ 11 million that it has raised for its noble cause – the advertising spend was something like $50 million. Agreed, the 50 mil. will have raised awareness of the state of AIDS victims in Africa – and the thought is that better education leads to more non-quantifiable advantages like more donations to other organizations – there does seem a vast disconnect between the advantages and the spend of the program itself. So someone does pay for the huge Buy Red banners one sees adorning Times Square.

So the only people that Buy Red helped were Madison Ave Ad agencies, high profile models living in Lexington Ave pads in buildings with doormen. Funny how the most well intentioned of efforts can sometimes have an entirely undesired impact.
Buy Less Crap has an innovative, very interesting alternate solution.