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November 20, 2008

Your Turn: Ad Free

GCT-Then.jpg

GCT-Now.jpg

In recent weeks, the authority restated its commitment to protect the concourse. But it also said that in its

search for revenue, it hopes to capitalize on advertising opportunities throughout the system.

I was interested in this NYT piece by David W. Dunlap focusing on Grand Central Station pre- and post-ad removal.

I bring it up because one of my longtime political passions has been the corporate and commercial appropriation of public space. I actually ran a few posts a couple years back addressing advertising in the public sphere but readers, at least at the time, didn’t seem to see a real issue there.

Although The Times article juxtaposes a current color image with the black-and-white one from ‘78, I desaturated the contemporary shot to make them more equivalent. Beyond that, I avoided any description of the two images — which you can read below after studying the pictures alone.

I’m interested in how you respond to these photos of Grand Central both before and now ad-free.

Space Without Ads Makes Its Own Statement at Grand Central (NYT)

(images: David W. Dunlap: from: “The City Observed: New York” (1978) and NY Times 2008. Looking east across Grand Central Terminal’s main concourse.)

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