Most people equate nature with escape because of the absence of modern-day technologies. So when you’re enjoying an afternoon at the beach, the last thing you’d expect to see is an ad floating over the water — but it’s becoming all too common.
The series of three photos captures a floating digital billboard cruising through the ocean, scrolling ads.
“It felt so dystopian. Nowhere is free from advertising!” the Redditor wrote.
Over-water commercials have been making unwelcomed appearances since at least as far back as 2016. According to Scenic America, the United States has at least two million billboards — the only form of advertising you can’t turn off.
Insider Intelligence reported that global media ad spending will surpass $1 trillion in 2024. That’s a lot of money. It’s even more so when you take into consideration that the sole purpose of advertising is to drive consumption with expectations of making a return.
Referred to as the “junk mail of the highway,” billboards do more than damage the scenic qualities of our communities. They distract drivers and bring down property values, according to Scenic America.
These types of ads are also causing environmental damage. According to an article on AdFree Cities, digital billboards use the equivalent of 11 homes worth of energy (in the UK).
Adding boats to the water with no purpose other than advertising only contributes to already polluted shorelines with fuel, oil, and waste discharges.
An article on Siteefy, updated this year, reported that the average person sees 10,000 ads per day in a variety of forms, and advertising companies are always on the prowl for new and unique ways to find consumers.
Advertising has been proven to negatively impact our well-being and mental health. The bombardment of bulletins may be contributing to digital overload, according to an article on GoodRx Health.
The Harvard Business Review found that increased advertising in an area is significantly correlated with decreased happiness among residents, which makes sense considering that nature is calming and proven by research to reduce stress.
The overall reaction to the post was disappointed fury.
“This is a new level of absolute b*******,” commented one user.
“Makes my blood boil,” said another.
“This should be illegal,” agreed a third.
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