Monday, June 9, 2008

Derrie-Air: the future of air travel?

An idea whose time has come?

Derrie-Air Exposed
June 09, 2008 Associated Press

Readers of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News opened their papers Friday to see ads for a new airline called Derrie-Air, which purportedly charges passengers by the pound.

But the new carrier will never get off the ground. It was a one-day advertising campaign about a fake airline by Philadelphia Media Holdings, the papers’ owner, and Gyro ad agency.

In light blue banners throughout the papers—as well as on their website—Derrie-Air cheerily trumpeted its policy: The more you weigh, the more you pay. The ads directed readers to

Philadelphia Media Holdings spokesman Jay Devine said the goal is to “demonstrate the power of our brands in generating awareness and generating traffic for our advertisers and put a smile on people’s faces.”

The company tracked traffic to the Derrie-Air site. Derrie-Air’s sample rates range from $1.40 per pound to fly from Philadelphia to Chicago, to $2.25 per pound to fly from Philadelphia to Los Angeles.

Those who scroll to the bottom of the homepage find out the truth behind Derrie-Air.A disclaimer labels the ad campaign “fictitious” and says it is designed “to test the results of advertising in our print and online products and to stimulate discussion on a timely environmental topic of interest to all citizens.”

“In other words,” it says, “smile, we’re pulling your leg.”

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