[I heard this on NPR as I was starting my car this morning. Sometimes, these things just write themselves. Oh, and the song I chose for this is just so appropriate.]
According to the Associated Press, New York City has plans to release New York City-branded condoms. You see, New York City hands out 1.5 million free condoms a month in ordinary wrappers, and health officials figure people would be more likely to actually use them if the packaging were more distinctive. According to the Health Commisioner, “Brands work, and people use branded items more than they use non-branded items, whether it’s a cola or a medicine”. The free condoms go to hundreds of organizations, which distribute them at health clinics and advocacy groups, bars, restaurants, nightclubs, nail salons and prisons. By comparison, the Los Angeles County health department gives out just over a million condoms per year. By having a distinctive condom and wrapper, they can determine the impact of the program. According to the health department, “If they describe our wrapper, then we’ll know that they would have used our condom”.
However, NYC was faced with the question of what to print on the condoms. Their decision? According to the health department, which uses the condom program to fight AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, it still considering package designs… but among the possibilities: a subway theme, with the various lines shown in different colors.
Subways? Oh, where’s Dr. Freud when we need him.
I have the answer. Long, tall pointy buildings. Certainly, the Empire State.