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Wal-Mart Advertising On Your Tombstone?

by SteveThursday, June 01, 2006

Recently, the U.S. Postal Service announced they would now allow companies to advertise on postage stamps, charging them 10 cents per stamp to put their sales pitch and logo on a piece of first class postage.

This caused Brian Vaszily, the writer for Six Wise, to think about other untapped places where advertising money could be made.

Among them, tombstones.

Vaszily writes...
...so like the United States Post Office, cemeteries must be losing money. Why not go the easy, unethical route like so many other businesses and sell advertising on old famous tombstones? The families of the deceased could even be cut in on with royalties if they initially protest.
Don't be alarmed! Vaszily is actually using sarcasm as a way to protest commercial advertising creeping into every aspect of our lives.

It's true that maintaining a cemetery costs money. If you want your grandfather's grave to stand the test of time, you have to keep it clean and visible. Ultimately, it's the responsibility of each deceased's descendents to do this. While time and money is a factor, it's not the primary problem.

The primary problem is a lack of importance. Most people hardly know their ancestors, and as a result, hardly care to maintain their graves. On top of that, most people today live far away from their ancestors' graves, that they can't maintain it.

The part about letting family members have a cut of the advertising profits sounds creepy. If you are a famous person, it's expected that many people will visit your grave. Imagine knowing your children are eagerly awaiting your death so that they can build a steady income stream!

It might also cause family members to erect large and ornate tombstones in hopes of attracting larger audiences. Cemeteries with high visibility, such as Hollywood Forever, in Los Angeles, could charge higher fees for plots.

But the idea of tombstone advertising isn't far fetched. Today, there already is technology to embed multimedia devices into tombstones, ranging from LCD displays, recorded audio messages, and even the ability to download media into your handheld computer.

Maybe when I die, I'll have my website address etched into my tombstone, "www.interment.net".

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