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Comments

JEB

Ouch. That smarts. But rightly so, I suppose. Got to figure out new ways of yelling at people about stuff.

kevin canadian bacon

if the folks at adbusters didn't take themselves so damn seriously, the mag might actually be good. they're probably getting their panties in a wad now that they realize mags are folding left and right and no one wants to pay $13 to avoid advertising.

kevin canadian bacon

that said, i rather like the 'just douche it' parody. it's not clever, but it just looks good for some reason, even if i'd never wear any of that day-glo stuff.

Gunther

Yeah, sort of agree, but also the Vice method of preaching 60 dollar t shirts and pretending to have an independent, unfiltered viewpoint while at the same time being owned and told what to do by viacom and nike doesn't sit too well either. Remember when you refused to post that spank rock ad?

hip-bag

Come off it. That "just douche it" bit is the tits and you know it.

yeah all of that 'trying to imagine a better world' shit is so yesterday. just concentrate on posturing - its all about how you look as the ship sinks. besides - who would want to get caught out being all serious about shit?

since when did anne coulter start blogging for vice?

anon

Well Vice, take comfort in the fact that YOU were on the front lines of opposing the Iraq War and all the other Greatest Hits from the two Bush Junior terms.

Oh wait, that's right, you were coked up for the past eight years. But now you're 30 and you're soooo over that. Gotcha.

dumb

Why would Anne Coulter be bemoaning the decline of protest culture? Not everybody who thinks adbusters is a magazine for and by self-righteous blowhards is a cryptofascist.

Vice

Firstly, we did oppose the Iraq War. Go to the 2002 section in the archives and read our interviews with the UN weapons inspector and the Iraqi ambassador in the lead-up to the invasion. http://www.viceland.com/int/v9n7/htdocs/you.php

Secondly though, did you seriously just say the front lines? The only people on the front lines of the Iraq War are soldiers, people trying to blow up the soldiers, and women and kids who keep getting shot and blown up by the first two. Trying to equate that with people who sit around in their socks and write the same angry magazine article or newspaper column every month for 7 years, or the kids who take a day off from college to walk up to Union Square and chant "War is not my voice" is not only retarded, but in fact the same kind of retardation the person who wrote this blog post was railing against. The Yes Men were great when they used their tactics to draw attention to hellacious corporate oversight in the face of massive human rights violations instead of just fluffling their own egos, adbusters was a decent read when their issues actually contained facts and figures instead of (ironically) shallow anti-hipster screeds and ads for adbuster-brand "brandless" shoes and corporate logo flags. The point is somewhere along the line, they each got so full of themselves they lost sight of their original point.

PS: If we were actually owned and operated by Viacom (which, to clarify, we aren't), why isn't their name or logo anywhere on this site, VBS, or anything we have ever published? What did they do, secret-buy us?

Dudebro

So then it's not true that MTV has first rights on VBS shows? And what about the spank rock ad. who made you take that down? An advertiser?

JEB

Hey, anon, as someone who was on what you meant by the "front lines", this article has a really good point.

For all the work we did (and I did plenty,) we failed. That's right. We failed. The war happened, and continues. Protest in this country hasn't really succeeded in achieving its stated goal since the battle in Seattle, and that was a very limited goal (shutting down one conference.)

The cops, and the culture generally, are now immune to the strategy and tactics used in Seattle, and in the 60s. Those techniques no longer work.

We need something new. Vice is absolutely right to point that out.

anon

Either this article is bullshit or it's not:
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/19/business/media/19vice.html

Kudos for insisting on that line in the contract that prohibits MTV from slapping a logo on VBS content they funded ("most of the funding" comes from Viacom, according to the article). Totally smart move on your part.

So they just throw money at you. That's a pretty sweet deal - how many other corporations just give away money without expecting a tax write off?

Vice

No the article isn't bullshit, but as you and everyone else who's posted it on our site thinking that they've discovered our dirty little secret has apparently failed to notice, it includes such memorable phrases as "Vice is still owned by the founders and several employees" "VBS is set up as a separate venture, although neither Vice nor MTV Networks would discuss the exact terms of the deal." and "this deal will also give MTV Networks a source of new television programming, since it has the rights to show VBS content on any of its channels worldwide."

That last part is important, because it's what they got out of the money they threw at us to help start VBS. (BTW, this article is a year old. "Most of the funding" came from Viacom back when it was written and the company was brand new and didn't have any ad clients yet. Right now it all comes from ads.) They're allowed to take programs we've made and aired, and run them on MTV and sell ads for them, etc. That's not "owning and operating" Vice and VBS, that's called having syndication rights.

The reason they can't and don't slap a logo on VBS content isn't because we said "pwetty pwetty pwease" when they were drawing up the contract, it's because it is not their content. They have no say in what it's about or how it's made--all they can do is come in after we've finished with it and say "We'd like to run this on TV without the swear words and the hooters." And that is fine with us.

You're falling into the same mentality that sees any potential conflict of interest as a full-blown, late-stage conspiracy. Funding does not equal buying, Vice and VBS are "funded" by hundreds of different companies every year who pay for ad space. Here's all that happened with Viacom: they paid us for the right to show the videos we run on our site on MTV. (I'm not sure where the "first rights" thing comes from, but if this is the case, why haven't you seen anything new crop up on MTV in the last year besides a stultifying new season of Cribs.) If that means they own us and tell us what to write about, then I guess that the Polk County Gazette, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and La Noticia de Managua have all been co-writing Marmaduke for the past 20 years.

As for the spank rock thing, that was some dispute between two advertisers that is way too boring and not-about-editorial-content for us to bother even trying to remember. I'm sure you can find some synopsis of it by digging around gawker or something.

dudebro

I stand corrected. Thanks for getting back to us on it, appreciate it.

anon

I also return with my fucking tail between my legs. Oh well. I really can't take issue with the syndication setup (not that you care). And I'd forgotten about the interview with the weapons inspector.

Couple points:

1. You guys cover what you cover really well
2. You don't seem to have an agenda beyond publishing interesting stuff, so taking shots at other people's attempts at political activism (however grossly misguided) comes off as assholish. (You don't have a fucking mission statement, do you?)
3. I realize that the asshole vibe is kinda your niche. And hey, ultimately that's an aesthetic line of argument, so whatever.

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