You, Personally, Need Not Observe Corporate Naming Rights

You, Personally, Need Not Observe Corporate Naming Rights

Hey there--kind of an abstract, minor thing today. Just wanted to note that you, the person who is reading this and ostensibly not receiving tens of millions of dollars from any corporation to do anything, do not need to call the place where the Vikings play "US Bank Stadium."

You can just call it "the Vikings Stadium" or whatever you want. People will know what you're talking about.

Like I said, verrrrry minor--there are so many other worse things going on in the world and even between your own ears, potentially. But I feel like selling the names of important public(...ish) pieces of property is tacky and was, at one point in the past, an early warning sign of our creeping corporate dystopia. 

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Locally, we don't have any super-terribly named stadiums. US Bank Stadium, Target Field, Target Center, Xcel [Energy] Center, and CHS Field are all pretty bland and inoffensive. It sure as hell beats the 1-800-ASK-GARY Amphitheater, Smoothie King Center, the Washington Redskins, or the Papajohns.com Bowl.

Though I would say that "T-C-F-Bank-Sta-di-um" has too many syllables to be pleasant. When I was a student back in the day, there was some effort to call the student section "The Vault" or something, which was extremely embarrassing. At least the bank's colors are maroon and gold, the color of the school whose students are being notably exploited by the bank.

US Bank has also done some shady shit, Target is a notorious union buster, and I'm not sure about the other two off the top of my head, but I'm sure something will come up eventually. Pretty wild to plug "[any large corporation] + settlement" into a search engine and see what pops up. And, you know, life goes on, but you don't need to help these guys advertise for free.

Plus, it's gotten funnier/more surreal as we, as a society, have dreamed a little smaller, selling naming rights to classrooms at the University of Minnesota, a parking ramp in Downtown East, a transit line in Colorado, and so on.

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The parking ramp one is pretty funny. There's a parking ramp across the street from the Vikings Stadium, and someone thought that what they should do, is that they should sell the naming rights for that to a store, Mills Fleet Farm. So there is a Mills Fleet Farm parking ramp in downtown Minneapolis, and there is not a Mills Fleet Farm! That's nuts.

Anyway if you are receiving a seven or eight figure payout from a corporation to call your new building something, then I get it I guess, but there's no reason anyone else has to play along. I mean, this is...pretty bad:

Road Construction Signage Belongs in the Road

Road Construction Signage Belongs in the Road

Uptown Is Dead--While I Am As Interesting As Ever

Uptown Is Dead--While I Am As Interesting As Ever