Las Vegas news station KVVU, a Fox affiliate, has begun placing cups of McDonald’s iced coffee on the news desk during the “news and lifestyle” portion of its morning show.
The New York Times reports that the product placement is part of a six-month promotion through local ad agency Karsh/Hagan.
“Executives at the station, one of 12 owned by Meredith Corporation, say the six-month promotion is meant to shore up advertising revenue and, as they told the news staff, will not influence content.
‘There was a healthy dose of skepticism, and I’m pleased there was — it means they’re being journalists,’ said Adam P. Bradshaw, news director of KVVU. The product placement was first reported Monday in The Las Vegas Sun.”
Bradshaw said that if a negative story about McDonald’s were to accompany the newscast, the coffee cups would be removed.
Product placement in television and movies has a somewhat sordid history, and as we reported last month, the practice faces legal issues and regulation by the FCC. In fact, research firm Nielsen is conducting a study as we speak concerning the frequency of its use. But what do you, as addies, think of it? See the poll below.
Update: TVNewser has more on this phenomena, with a story on CNBC and Home Depot.