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Ugh... dilemma #2: mascots

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
These buggers have been a problem in *every* city I've ever worked. If it wasn't a clown, it was a bunny, if it wasn't either of those it was some homeless guy with four neon green signs on a stick...

This is the first city I have ever worked in that actually wants to do something about it. I've read through various sign ordinances to no avail. Anyone know how to get rid of these guys? Or is this a freedom of speech type problem?

 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
"Portable" or "Moveable" advertising ban perhaps?

EDIT: I realize you're in Canukistan, but in teh US of A the Supreme Copurt has established that commercial free speech does not carry the same consitutional protections.
 

Zoning Goddess

Cyburbian
Messages
13,852
Points
39
Do you have a s.f. limit for commercial signage per parcel? If so, does the addition of Mr. Sign out front exceed their maximum?
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
Here's what I have decided to do...

We have a catch all description of "attention getting devices", and I added mascots (with a lame defintion afterwards) to the prohibited attention getting device category. It's the only thing I can think of. If someone has some more suggestions, I'm all ears though. :)
 

jordanb

Cyburbian
Messages
3,232
Points
25
How about all of those multi-colored flags and shit that car dealerships put up?
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
jordanb said:
How about all of those multi-colored flags and shit that car dealerships put up?
Those are included in attention getting devices and are prohibited.
 

Dan

Dear Leader
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
18,699
Points
69
jordanb said:
How about all of those multi-colored flags and shit that car dealerships put up?
When a zoning code addresses them, banners, penants, streamers and flags that are not flown in compliance with the US flag code are usually regulated as signs. Some cities prohibit them; others cave in to the local vehicle dealers' association cries of "tradition!" and permit them.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,549
Points
25
I have a feeling you could regulate them as portable signs (we don't allow them). However, I think that any business would win in court if the City issued a citation.

We had a car dealer who wanted to display around 40 american flags and our Plan Commission denied them because it was clearly designed to attract attention to their dealership. They tried to argue that it was un-American to not allow this. The Plan Commission essentially told them that flags must be on a flagpole and that it was unpatriotic to use the flag to draw attention to their dealership. Their request was denied. They also tried whining to the newspaper.
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
[ot] Repo -

Your Plan Commission must be great to work with, even though they are a bit over zealous from time to time. It's better than the "well, its better than whut we's all got now" attitude to the west and south of you (that Home Depot parking lot still irks me!).
[/ot]
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
Repo Man said:
I have a feeling you could regulate them as portable signs (we don't allow them). However, I think that any business would win in court if the City issued a citation.

We had a car dealer who wanted to display around 40 american flags and our Plan Commission denied them because it was clearly designed to attract attention to their dealership. They tried to argue that it was un-American to not allow this. The Plan Commission essentially told them that flags must be on a flagpole and that it was unpatriotic to use the flag to draw attention to their dealership. Their request was denied. They also tried whining to the newspaper.
We had a Taco Hell try the same thing. A dozen US flags on top of their building was supposed to be patriotic. No. It helped when more than a couple veterans in the audience made some comments about it. They were allowed to put up a single flagpole in the front, but it was never installed. I drove past a couple weeks ago and noticed two US flags flying from roofline. Maybe it is time to pay them a visit.

On the subject of mascots, I am not sure that I would advocate going after them. It is one thing to have a guy wearing a sign, and another to have Geoffrey the Giraffe or Ronald McDonald out in front of the store. You would have to word an ordinance very carefully to discriminate between the two.
 

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
Beware of potential image problems: "The big, bad city is picking on the poor fun, loving guy waving in the clown suit. He is otherwise unemployable and now must be laid off. He makes kids smile and his employer desperately needs to compete with the giant chains."

Would the average person want the city to crack down on these guys?
 

Duke Of Dystopia

Cyburbian
Messages
2,713
Points
24
Another issue with portable signs and mascots would be how to deal with signage on vehicles.

If a man can't walk around in a sandwhich board, why should you allow a large semi with thier giant logo to drive through your town? Each are equally obnoxious. Why allow a piza delivery vehicle to have a roof mounted sign but not a man to walk with a sandwich board. Again, the vehicle's message will reach more people. This could be repeated for any business that wants to put a logo on the vehicle (magnetic aplique signs). All messages that will reach more people than the poor bastard having to shuffle around between those boards.

Will mascots from schools, sports teams, McGruff the Crime dog (now that would be funny, you could throw that guy in the dog suit in jail to fight an unlawful advertising message), and colleges be subject to the same rules?

I have seen them in every town also, but I have never heard anyone complain about the sandwich board guy. More like pity (Ah what a crapy job, he MUST be desparate for work).

Are you over run by this type of advertising? Can't be any worse than SPAM! :)
 

Rem

Cyburbian
Messages
1,523
Points
23
They are prohibited by road rules in NSW, from some locations. When they first started appearing a few years ago, the idea was mainly to work on the footpath and surprise drivers, and therefore attract their attention, on the adjacent carriageway. The hopped around a lot and darted towards the cars (without leaving the footpath).

After a couple of rear-enders near intersections, their operations were limited to locations where they couldn't cause a distraction to drivers. This has, in the main, killed off the practice - ie. they can't operate in locations where they would be noticed, therefore there is no advertising payback. You may see them in pedestrian environments where they become pseudo buskers.
 
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