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Can the Revolution be Re-Branded?

Occupy Wall Street (OWS) has held pop culture and the media hostage for several months. How long can the movement (pitting the people against the profits) stand (or sit) strong?

Enter corporate branding stage left, gangster rapper Jay-Z stage right.

First up, Ice Cream (Unilever). As Milwardbrown reported on their blog, Ben & Jerry’s got into the mix: “Just over three weeks after protestors camped out in New York’s financial district, the board of Ben & Jerry’s announced that it stood with the protesters and served them ice cream in New York’s Zuccotti Park.” A little Cherry Garcia brand placement might be fitting among all that flannel and wool.

On deck, Media. Covalent, a media production company, is producing commercials for OWS. Paid or not, Covalent is reaping the free publicity.

In the hole, gangsta rapper Jay-Z. The Brooklyn-born entrepreneur must be part of the 99%, right? Well, not exactly. But “mad props” go out to J-O-V-A for the effort. Styleite (the fashion blog) reports that due to official OWS  protest, the Rocawear clothing label has decided to pull the Occupy All Street T-Shirt.

Batting clean up (and my personal favorite) Shepard Fairey sneaks in the back door by refashioning his famous Obama “HOPE” poster into a hooded Guy Fawkes mask.

Yet even Shepard couldn’t (dare I say) shepherd all seperate OWS factions into his print studio. According to the Huffington Post “several people believed to be associated with the Occupy Wall Street movement [concluded] it did not coincide with their “Statement of Autonomy,” claiming that the poster gave off the impression of hopeful partisanship…”

From the ice cream truck to video producer, from the gangsta rapper to guerrilla tagger, everyone is trying to make a buck or two from Occupy Wall Street. Yet only one man seems to be sticking, or should I say spraying a lasting message

Vying for meme of the year: Pepper Spray Cop, Lieutenant John Pike


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