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By Jeremy Schiffres, Daily and Sunday Freeman, Kingston, N.Y.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Whose ad is it anyway?

If you're a Time Warner cable TV customer, you surely have seen the "Sir Charge" commercial, in which a man sporting a dapper suit and speaking in a British accent claims to be the infamous "Sir Charge" (a play on the word "surcharge") that keeps showing up on your Verizon phone bill.

The intent of the commercial is to get people to switch from Verizon's phone service to Time Warner's as a way to avoid Verizon's surcharges and save money.

Trouble is, the word "Verizon" is spoken or shown five times in the commercial. The phrase "Time Warner" is said exactly once.

I'm not an advertising expert, but it seems to me that mentioning the competition's name five times while mentioning the product you're trying to sell only once defeats the purpose of the commercial. I kid you not when I tell you that, for quite some time, I thought the "Sir Charge" spot was an ad for Verizon.



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