Thursday August 3, 2011



Pink! It's My New Obsession

A comment about the pink stink, advertorials and yellow journalism in Chilliwack

Craig Hill/Voice


ot many reading this will remember 4th Ave (Van) in the late 60s-early 70s, but it was a very colourful place to live.


There was every shade of the rainbow and it was cool and funky. The more different colours on the picket fences the better. But that was the 60s and it was funkadelic to go ga-ga with paint. It was a place of communes and underground radio stations and its no wonder that Greenpeace got it's start right there in Kitsilano with some hippie cast-offs.

At first I believed this pink paint item to be a non-story. So, the woman was told by the City that she was out of sync with the Official Community Plan by painting her building pink. She broke the bylaw and everyone from builders on up have to contend with the bylaws.

But as the story grew legs, it's become one of those warm fuzzy fight-for-the-little-people stories as it resonated across the country.

It's my understanding that the woman, when told she broke the bylaw, immediately said she would comply and paint over the pink. Then as the story started to run amok in the sheeple media circuit, the woman began to grow a pair.

The store owner is not a free thinker. She wasn't planning on fighting City Hall until she glommed the media spotlight. If she really wanted to fight for her paint she would have responded in that way immediately and not after the national spotlight was on her.

So the advertorial grows bolstered by national media attention coast-to-coast. Local media reports say that now she wants to fight Chilliwack City Hall.

Let's all come back down to planet earth here. 

The coverage will get her off to a good start on a corner where every other business there has failed for as long as you'd care to remember so in 6-months she'll be gone and the pink will remain. You hope the business succeeds but the trend there seems to be the opposite.

Obviously, all the "yellow journalism" is great for her business and hats off to her for milking it for everything it's worth. It's great advertising. If she puts up a fuss it's only for advertising. Nothing more, because; a) the City is not going to amend the colour bylaw and b) the City isn't going to scrap the OCP because the store owner wants pink.

This has been an advertorial from the get-go because we already see the result. A bored media out looking for Mike McCardell fluff.

Unless something else of significance happens with this story, the Voice won't be giving coverage to this one because in two weeks it will be done unless this store owner has deep pockets for things like lawyers.

Do people want the downtown core to look like 4th Ave in the 60s? If so, then I vote for polka dots too.

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