If you happened to walk through Times Square this past week, you might have noticed a billboard flashing words like criminal, robbery, freedom, and progress, all beneath the phrase Piracy is.
This is part of the "Artists vs. Artists" Project, from Brooklyn band Ghost Beach and agency TBWA\Chiat\Day New York. With some Times Square real estate at their disposal, the band and agency decided to provoke a discussion about the consequences of piracy--both good and bad--rather than to just paste up the band members’ mugs. The billboard flashes two hashtags--#artistsagainstpiracy and #artistsforpiracy—and asks viewers to choose a side. Right now, the pro piracy camp is well ahead.
The artists are offering songs for free each month on their website, but they are also giving fans the option of downloading them from iTunes.
“Since we started, we’ve given away all our music for free, so just telling people to purchase our music somewhere didn’t seem natural for us," says Josh Ocean from Ghost Beach. "So we said, ‘What if we take advantage of this and open up a discussion about the new music industry?’ "
The Times Square ad was offered to Ghost Beach as part of an agreement with American Eagle, which licensed the band’s song "Miracle" for a series of online videos.
[Photo Courtesy of TBWA/Chiat/Day New York]