Go to the Main Business Forum page

The "balloon boy's" parents... What is the limit to free publicity? [Archive] - SOWPub Small Business Forums


View Full Version : The "balloon boy's" parents... What is the limit to free publicity?

Pages : [1] 2 3 4 5

Dien Rice
October 20, 2009, 07:32 PM

I've been following the "balloon boy" story... If you don't know of it, you can read about it on (for example) google news...


In brief, about a week ago, there were fears that a 6 year old boy had become "caught" in a helium balloon (with basket) that he had accidentally released. People were afraid for the boy's safety, and many were riveted to the news story (I was one of them). The helium balloon was tracked as it traveled at high altitude across the country. Planes were diverted away from its airspace. Rescue teams were activated, especially when the boy was found not to be in the balloon, and there were fears he had fallen out.

In the end, it turned out that the kid was never in the balloon at all, but was "hiding" at his parents' house.

Now, there is the real possibility that the whole thing was a hoax, or a "publicity stunt". The boy's parents had apparently wanted to create a reality TV show, starring them and their strange activities and experiments. When his Dad asked the boy on national TV (CNN) why he was hiding, the boy answered to his father, "You guys said that we did this for the show."

So, what are the limits for publicity stunts? When you look into the history of publicity stunts, the limits of what's "accepted" are usually stretched. Do you think such a publicity stunt is justified? Where is the limit?

- Dien

P.S. You can find some interesting past commercial publicity stunts on the "Museum of Hoaxes" website...


Some recent posts on the forum...

Unusual Business Ideas
Interesting, proven, and unusual business ideas
Entrepreneur-Web Internet Resources
Directory of resources for entrepreneurs
Best of Sowpub
Some of the best posts

This is a SOWPub Archive page