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OOH and Racism Today

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Nike video

OOH and Racism Today


Should Out of Home take a stronger position and become more involved with what is going on in America when it comes to racism? The George Floyd death has been a catalyst for protests, violence and unrest. 

Watching the news all night and into the early morning today and the reaction in every major city in America has been difficult to view. In many of the camera shots, billboards were standing in the background.

Is this an opportunity for OOH to take a leadership role? Yes, we can display Black Lives Matter and similar anti racism messages. We can inspire through our media format. Is that enough?  If we agree to do so, don’t we have a responsibility of taking on a more sensitive and difficult question, which is: What can Outdoor Advertising do to increase the hiring and participation of people of color in our Industry? Will displaying thousands of messages be enough?  Let’s inspire and take action

If we are going to talk the talk, we should walk the walk. 

Anyone want to name all of the Black-owned traditional billboard companies they know of?
How about naming just one? Can you name even one?
We know of just one.

How about it OOH, can we be part of the change? 

Should we partner with someone like Nike and offer to share their powerful message which they recently released, “For Once, Don’t Do It.” See the Nike 60 second video at the bottom of the post.

The Nike video message: “For once, don’t do it. Don’t pretend there’s not a problem in America. Don’t turn your back on racism. Don’t accept innocent lives being taken from us. Stop being silent and making excuses. Be part of the change.”




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  1. Gino Sesto says

    The music industry is going dark on Tuesday, maybe billboards can do something similar. Personally i think enlisting people to vote would be the more effective route. Putting up a slogan is just lip service. We need some changes…there is a lot of hatred and divisiveness in our government only fueling this more..

  2. Pablo Picasso says

    Bill, you mentioned in another article, not seeing any comments on this one. I read it when it was published and very much agree that there needs to be more diversity within the OOH industry. This includes growth and support of black owned as well as other minority owned companies. Like everything else, I’m sure it will be a slow process, but our media is in the public and those working behind the scenes to show these public faces need to represent the cities we work in.

  3. No Fear No Favor says

    Pablo Picasso; From a perspective of goal setting and establishing a high jump bar, I think your point of ‘representing the cities we work in’ is a standard which should be applied. Thank you for the comments.

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