The Writers Guild of America is sick of having to write storylines in TV shows solely to feature a product or brand, so much so that the group is bringing the issue to the FCC. The WGA is hoping to make it so that any kind of advertisement is blatantly disclosed, and writers don't have to sneakily work products into a plotline where they maybe don't make sense.
geeksugar has questioned the product integration on Gossip Girl, noting that the show is clearly required to use Verizon products, but the gadgets used by the characters don't make sense for their characters.
WGA West president Patric Verrone explains that with product integration, "the hope is that consumers, not expecting to find a commercial within their program, will fail to realize they are actually being advertised to. This practice exploits the emotional connection viewers have with shows and their characters in order to sell a product." He goes on to claim that audiences are alienated by these sneaky tactics, though "an industry source" counters that "product placement has not been an issue for viewers."
What do you think? Should shows stop trying to work in products, sometimes at the expense of consistency within the story? Or does it not bother you?
Photo courtesy of the CW