T-Shirt space =advertising boon

This rambling thought has pestered me for longer than I care to admit.

When did someone/company get the idea to start using the fronts/backs of t-shirts for advertising?

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Probably the day someone stupid enough to provide advertising space for free decided to go with it. The idea of a t-shirt to provide a personal space for the expression of ideas is great, but I can’t believe all those people who think it’s actually “cool” to provide free advertising space for Gap or Nike.

Someone should start a cooperative program wherein companies pay users to display their ads. Wearing an ad on my t-shirt is like paying companies to put their ads on the walls of my room.

You mean Elijah, that the public comes in and looks at your walls?

You should see what golfers get paid to wear a baseball hat with a sponsors name on it.

Tee hee. Yes, if you call my friends and cats a public. Regardless of the target audience, I’m still not paying to display advertisement. If they can pay golfers, they can pay me.

I agree with you Elijah, about people thinking they are “cool” to wear Ralph Lauren, Gap, Calvin, whatever on their chest. I have never owned any of these things and I will go one step farther and say I will never own an Old Navy sweatshirt because it looks like I’m advertising for some arthritic seaman.
That and that lady in the ad with the big glasses annoys me.

Ah yes, divorce, fromt he Latin word meaning to rip out a man’s genitals through his wallet. - Robin Williams

I’ve been archiving old surfing photos and have found instances of t-shirt advertising as far back as 1962. The earliest occurance seems to be for various gyms, worn by musclemen in Venice, CA. A few years later you start to see t-shirts with surfboard makers’ logos displayed. I also recall seeing photos of a crowd at Ontario or Riverside speedways where many people were wearing STP oil additive t-shirts. These also date from the early 60s. Also remember that sports francises have been selling jerseys with their clubs names on them for about a hundred years.

I know a doctor–a psychiatrist–who once told me she saw a young girl, with a very large bosom, wearing a T-shirt with an appropriate ad on it–to ski “Mammoth”! :wink:

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What about shoes? It’s okay to wear a pair of Nikes with 20 swooshes on each shoe, but wearing a t-shirt with one is stupid?


Hey, I wouldn’t say businesses are getting advertizing for free exactly. They’re getting it for less than free. :frowning:

Businesses used to give away such t-shirts. :slight_smile: I’d accept them but use them only as undershirts. The press mentioned somebody who wanted to rent himself out as advertizing space but nothing seems to have come of that idea.

Then businesses started selling their advertizing t-shirts but at no more than the cost of a plain t-shirt. :slight_smile: :frowning: Those, too, worked nicely as undershirts, though they of course had no advantage to undershirts, except you could be smug in the huge joke you were playing on corporate America by covering up their logos.

I blame the liberals for confusing our youth about capitalism, and thus somehow causing them think it makes sense to plug a corporation with a big ad the kids pay big money to wear. :frowning: But I guess I do appreciate it at the same time, as I get a good laugh each time I see some moron wearing such a garment. :slight_smile:

JustJoan: When did someone/company get the idea to start using the fronts/backs of t-shirts for advertising?

As soon as they realized that people were willing to pay to wear their logos on T-shirts. Mobile advertising that pays the company directly. How could they lose?

I only wear T’s that are free and/or are from some important event that I attended.

On a related topic, I remember visiting Royal Gorge as a kid. Men slapped bumper stickers on your car as soon as you pulled by. They realized that bumper stickers were advertizing. Meanwhile at every other tourist attraction, people pay to get bumper stickers to advertize places.