Product placement is in flux. It’s going up in some areas and down in others, but it’s still popular. Ars Technica reports that though placements have fallen overall in 2008, network TV has seen a 12 percent increase in the practice. This covert advertising is most popular with game and reality shows such as American Idol (4,636 placements between January & June 08), Deal or No Deal (2,122) and Extreme Makeover Home Edition (1,776).

The practice seems even more prevalent on cable programs. Though as a whole it has fallen by 20 percent, the number of placements is astounding. As seen in the graph above, the top 10 cable shows have sprinkled tens of thousands of products amongst their content.

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