Proliferation of advertising billboards: one reason, two justifications
Despite adverse public opinion, the proliferation of advertising billboards continues in our expressways, avenues, and streets. Its logic is simple: it is a highly profitable economic activity, a good business, and as such it should not be subjected to limits imposed by the State. Marketing principles validate the notion that public policies on the use of public space should privilege practices of the free market that generate revenue, or progress.
Promoters of this marketing logic present two additional arguments to support the proliferation of advertising billboards. One alludes to the sanctity of private property: the owner of a property is entitled to use it for his personal benefit, including renting it for advertising purposes. The other claims the inalienable right to freedom of expression, extended to advertising messages.
Luckily, both arguments have been disqualified by judicial decisions in U.S. courts. In fact, there are already several jurisdictions in the United States that prohibit the use of advertisement billboards because they are considered adverse to public well-being. Puerto Rico awaits the restoration of a similar public policy, .which was once in effect, not long ago, and was cause for national pride.
From Editorial`s Staff
Author: Proyectos FPH
Published: January 22, 2008.
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