Rating: Perhaps the F1 team should turn it into a real code?
What a superb way of getting barcodes into the public consciousness! Put them onto both the sports car driver’s overalls and the panels of the actual Formula One car itself. Scuderia Ferrari Marloboro may have done the barcode industry a big favour here.
The whole fuss surrounding Scuderia Ferrari Marloboro’s use of a logo that looks very similar to the barcode on the back of a packet of cigarettes has been caused by a comment from an unnamed spokesman for the European Public Health Commissioner.
He told a reporter for The Times that he thought Marlboro’s approach – using what looked like the barcode for a cigarette packet – constituted potential subliminal marketing.
It does bear a striking resemblance to a 1D barcode, of course. Efforts to scan it in fail, however. Try it for yourself.
A Ferrari spokesperson has moved swiftly to deny the allegations saying, “The barcode is part of the livery of the car, it is not part of a subliminal advertising campaign.”
It is difficult to see how the image can be viewed as subliminal. If the logo blatantly looks like a packet of fags then it is the opposite of subliminal – which is actually termed intrusive advertising.
If this unnamed official were to have his way, then the image of a dark beer with a frothy head would constitute a subliminal advert for Guinness.
You have to ask why the barcode suggests a packet of cigarettes to this particular official. Is it just because it is red?
Perhaps Ferrari is missing a trick? Perhaps it should turn the logo into a real barcode that could be resolved online as the URL for the company’s F1 home page?
Maybe, GoMo News should suggest this to the Italian racing team? Subliminally, naturally.
**UPDATE** Please see Ferrari barcode labelled a subliminal ad – Part II **