Rename Your City

ZUM Mittwoch Letzte Bearbeitung: 19. November 2005 um 17 Uhr 57 Minuten

 

Auch dieser Eintrag zehrt immer noch von den unglaublichen und doch wahren Ereignissen der vorangegangenen Woche [1].

Am Donnerstag letzter Woche hatte sich nämlich die Stadt Clark in Texas auf Beschluss des zweiköpfigen Rates umbenannt und heisst ab sofort: DISH, Texas.

Das Ganze ist der erfolgreiche Coup einer Werbekampagne für die EchoStar Communications Corp. in Englewood, Colorado, die auch auf diesem Wege auf ihre Möglichkeiten aufmerksam macht, Free-TV-Programme per Satellit zu empfangen.

Das Ganze ist nachzulesen in einer Meldung von AP [2] in der dazu zu lesen ist:

In exchange, the 55 homes in the bedroom community a half hour’s drive north of Dallas-Fort Worth get free Dish satellite equipment and basic service for the next decade. Company executives pegged the deal at about $4,500 per home. Signs bearing the town’s name are being changed to DISH as well.

Beyond the lure of free TV service for the 125 residents, the renaming is a way for the tiny town to attract businesses and residents, said Mayor Bill Merritt, who actively courted EchoStar to pick the town.

Solche Bemühungen sind weder die Ausnahme...

Across the nation, small communities are being courted by large corporations who say renaming a town provides a marketing buzz that can’t be bought in television ads. Though some worry about corporate America’s increasing influence in local government, most towns seem eager to accept.

... noch erst seit heute auf der Tagesordnung.

Da gibt es jene Stadt, die ehemals Hot Springs, N.M. hiess und die sich in den 50er Jahren umbenannt hatte in Truth or Consequences, N.M., was damals der Titel einer bekannten Quizshow war - und deren Bürgermeister einen Tag vor der aktuellen Namensänderung der Stadt Clark verstarb.

It was 1950 when Hot Springs, N.M., voted 1,294-295 to change its name to Truth or Consequences. Host Ralph Edwards, who died Wednesday at age 92, had promised to broadcast the popular radio show from the town that agreed to the change.

Und das gibt es die Stadt Halfway, die zu Beginn dieses neuen Jahrtausend in Half.com umgetauft wurde. Zeitweise, für ein Jahr:

In 2000, Halfway, Ore., become Half.com for a year in an agreement that put $100,000 in the town coffer and a new computer lab in the school.

The rural town of 345 used the money to buy a snow plow, something former Mayor Marvin Burgraff said was badly needed and has already been used several times this year. And it gave the area known for its outdoor splendor a tourist boon that continues to this day.

Though the name is back to Halfway, the town still has signs that read "Welcome to Half.com, the World’s First Dot-com City."

"It was a good experience," said Burgraff, who served as mayor after the decision had already been approved. "It was kind of fun. You look back on it and it’s good thoughts."

In an age of pervasive advertising most people ignore, such stunts are a good way to grab the public’s attention, said Mark Hughes, chief executive of Buzzmarketing and the former Half.com executive who devised the Oregon deal.

Aber auch das gibt es: die Einwohner der Stadt Biggs, die der Versuchung nicht nachgaben, sich in Got Milk umbenennen zu lassen:

In 2003, residents of Biggs, Calif., overwhelmingly rejected a California Milk Processor Board proposal to rename the city of 1,800 to Got Milk? in exchange for a milk museum and money for the local school.

"People’s take on it was, ’This is just an advertising ploy by the milk board.’ There was a certain segment of population that wanted to tar and feather the mayor for even suggesting it," city clerk Marlee Mattos recalled. "Now people bring it up jokingly, everybody groans and moves on.".

Bei uns in Deutschland haben ja solche Branding-Bemühungen bislang "nur" die Kindernamen und Fussballstadien erfasst.

Und selbst wenn Berlin pleite ist, wird "Berlin" wohl "Berlin" bleiben. Aber: da steht ja noch das Berliner Olympiastadion zur Verfügung [3], um vielleicht alsbald als O-Two-Stadion erneut in die Geschichte einzugehen. Oder etwa nicht, Herr Beckenbauer?