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An open letter to CIVL

I’ve got a bone to pick with you. Your advertising for this referendum sucks.



By Dessa Bayrock (The Cascade) – Email

Print Edition: November 30, 2011

Dear CIVL,

Bro, I feel for your cause. I do. You’re kind of broke, and hombre, I get that. I’ve been there. You’ve got big dreams. I get that too, and you know what, I’m all for giving you another four dollars of my hard-earned dough. I’m going to vote, I’m going to vote “yes,” and I’m going to convince some peeps they should do the same. You’re a chill dude, CIVL. We should hang out more. Let me throw you some fundage.

But I’ve got a bone to pick with you. Your advertising for this referendum sucks. It doesn’t just suck. It sucks hard. Your posters are tiny, crowded, and hard to read. If you want to win some student love, you can’t crowd your shit. Cool graphics, bro, for sure. But if I can’t read it while balancing a stack of books and rushing to class, it’s not going to work. I only noticed because I like you. We’re friends. That’s what friends do.

But most students don’t care jackshit for you, CIVL, they don’t know what you’re on about or what you’re trying to do. Bro, that’s gotta suck. So you have to make your campaign simple. Punchy. You don’t need that huge paragraph superimposed on a typewriter or whatever that sweet graphic is. Black on white. Bam bam bam. What do you want? You want four dollars. Bro, simple. Students aren’t going to begrudge you four dollars. That’s a coffee. That’s a beer.

If you ask for straight up money, they aren’t going to like it. Why would they? Student fees are shitty. Nobody likes paying anything. But we’re all bros, right? We’re chill. Don’t pop your signs full of dollar signs. Just be all, “Bro. Buy me a coffee.” Dude, I buy my bros coffee all the time. (You’re welcome, Van Veen.) They aren’t going to judge on you for needing a coffee.

Then tell them what you’re going to do with that coffee. All you have to say is, “Bro, with that coffee, I’m going to hire more students just like you.” Say, “Bro, you want to work on a radio station? Of course you do. DJs get the ladies. Come see me. Buy me a coffee and we’ll make some shit happen.”

CIVL, four dollars a semester isn’t a huge deal. Play it cool. Don’t make it seem so life-and-death. Be chill. When you crowd your tiny posters with tiny words, I get all confused. I start wondering what you really want. I don’t want to pay more. You lose me.

But tone it all down, play it all chill. Sure, hombre – I’ll buy you a coffee. I’m just helping a bro out. And I’m sure plenty of other students would do the same.

Just get the word out there. Plaster the walls with your message. That’s my other beef: how many peeps actually know this is going on? Shout it out. Fight apathy. Stop using tiny posters. Let me see big words for a big message. “BUY CIVL A BEER.” “BUY CIVL A COFFEE.” “C’MON, BRO – WE’D DO THE SAME.”

‘Cause, bro – I know you would.


D. Bayrock

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  1. Jonny

    December 2, 2011 at 11:04 pm

    chill hombre bro

  2. alyson

    March 5, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    This is incredibly condescending, immature, and possibly the furthest thing from good journalism I’ve read in a long time. It was poorly written, your “bro’s” and “hombres” stopped being funny after the intro paragraph, and you just sort of seem like the kind of person I would hate to be around.

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