QUIT PASSING THE BUCK; BASE SHOWS HAVE SPONSORS;THE MISSING COPY; COMMISSION SYSTEM WILL FADE; SPORTS-AVERSE AREN'T GEEKS;BAD CHOICE

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The article in your June 19 issue, "Riding out the Dole storm," could well be the new standard instruction manual on How to Pass the Buck, or "I Don't Claim Responsibility, I Just Do What I'm Told to Do," etc.

Comments like "The responsibility for program content lies with the broadcaster," and "Nobody [else] has said they were pulling ads," and ".... blamed advertisers for their pursuit of ratings" and "We'll make what [moviegoers] pay for."

The finger-pointing .... makes my stomach turn. If these people as individuals don't have the moral fortitude or guts to say, "You know, I don't think that is right. Therefore, I refuse to be part of this garbage," then they should refuse to make any comment.

Come on, folks, take a stand one way or another. Is your job or your money or your Eddie Bauer outfits so important that you can't stand for something?

Bill Williams

VP, Louisville Slugger

Louisville, Ky.

I have to respond to Jeffery D. Zbar's comment in his article on air shows (AA, May 15) that ".... military rules restrict corporate sponsorships on military bases." Not so! Civilian-produced events may be restricted in base access, but all military services have recognized the power of event marketing and the "win-win" aspect of sponsorship in providing quality events for service members and families through base recreation programs.

I handle corporate sponsorship for events at Fort Campbell, home of the 101st Airborne Division and serving over 100,000 active duty and retired military personnel and family members. I and my counterparts at other installations develop and negotiate sponsorships for military athletic, entertainment, recreation, youth and other programs; events range from programs involving a few hundred to large annual events-including air shows-which attract civilian visitors from off base and may top 100,000 spectators.

Sponsors targeting the military have the advantage of working with very identifiable market segments and receive sponsor benefits comparable to "civilian" events, with the added benefits of retail tie-in opportunities with the base commissary and exchange. Sponsorship of military recreation events is now a multimillion-dollar business; examples of successful military recreation/sponsor partnerships for the United States Army-at both national and local levels-include Miller Brewing Co. and AT&T.

The Morale, Welfare & Recreation department at any local base or military service branch headquarters can provide information on corporate sponsorship on military bases.

Victoria A. Palmer

Corporate sponsorship coordinator

Fort Campbell, Ky.

We always look forward to your top 300 list (AA, June 19). It gives graphic testimony to our company's growth. This year, all of our repeat performers took major hikes upward, and one of our newest publications-the popular HomePC magazine-leaped onto the list at number 250.

Given that you only allotted five paragraphs to high technology, the fastest growing market segment, I thought I'd supply the editorial you must inadvertently have cut for space, to wit: "The technology publisher whose publications made the greatest leap upward in '94 is CMP, whose HomePC magazine is the only 1994 market entry in the home computing category that made it onto our list."

Barbara Kerbel

Director-corporate communications

CMP Publications

Manhasset, N.Y.

In response to the recent articles on agency compensation:

How can an advertising agency act as a true marketing partner when its own compensation is linked to its recommendations to the advertiser? Under a media commission compensation structure, it could be detrimental for any agency to recommend anything other than media, for it relies on the commission income to pay salaries and rent.

Under a guaranteed income or fee-based system, agency and advertiser are much better situated to roll up their sleeves and figure out what is best for the advertiser's brand. Agency compensation is then more closely linked to a) the agency's strategic and creative marketing communications expertise, and b) meeting marketing and business objectives.

While commission-based systems still carry a certain level of comfort, I bet that agencies and advertisers will increasingly establish more equitable financial agreements to more truly foster and nurture their marketing relationships.

Tilly Pick

Oak Park, Ill.

Miguel Benas writes in your June 5 letters column, "It's only bad when sexism is applied to women." He says he loves the ESPN ad that says all men think about is sex and sports.

Okay, but I was more than mildly pissed to read another ESPN ad headlined "A handful of guys cannot be reached through ESPN. But they're all geeks who wouldn't buy your product anyway."

If this isn't a slam at guys who aren't necessarily sports fans, I don't know what is.... I don't watch sports and I'll be damned if I'm a geek. I buy upscale stuff, I'm a college professor and my income level is one most advertisers are interested in. My grown children and my wife would hardly agree that I'm a geek, although at times I can be a pain in the ass.

So to hell with ESPN and its sexist crap. Advertising, besides making a point, needs to make it with respect.

A. Jerome Jewler

College of Journalism &

Mass Communications

University of South Carolina

Columbia, S.C.

I am outraged at what your magazine has done. How could you name Sports Illustrated magazine of the year for 1994 (AA, March 6)? That magazine continues to have a reputation for degrading women athletes by catering to their male audience with the disgusting swimsuit issue.

Your action tells the public that you condone these types of actions rather than what decent things other hundreds of magazines may be doing.

Helena Kim

Atlanta

Advertising Age welcomes letters to the editor, but we ask that they be held to no more than 250 words in length. The editors reserve the right to edit letters. Address letters to Advertising Age, Viewpoint Editor, 740 Rush St., Chicago 60611. Fax: (312) 649-5331. Letters can also be posted through the Ad Age Bulletin Board on Prodigy, or by Prodigy E-Mail at EHBU73A@prodigy.com.

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