Backlash Killed The Ridiculously Stupid And Garish 'Toyota Red Zone'

  • Eric Goldschein

toyota red zoneDon’t ever let someone tell you a small group of dedicated people can’t change the world by complaining over social media. In fact, it seems to be the only way to get things done anymore.

After everybody flipped out about the “Toyota Red Zone” — an ugly, enormous ad for Toyota digitally plastered across the screen during the 49ers-Ravens preseason game, Toyota decided against using the graphic again in the remaining San Francisco preseason games (Toyota and the Niners have a multi-million dollar deal and are “exclusive partners.”), although spokeswoman Sona Iliffe-Moon gave herself some wiggle room.

Via ABC News:

“We’re football fans too. We’ve heard fan feedback and it’s not our intention to distract from the joy of the game,” she said. “Toyota will continue to be a strong supporter of the 49ers as part of our multi-year partnership and we’re working to ensure that future brand mentions won’t distract from game play. During the remainder of the 49ers’ pre-season games, fans and viewers should no longer see the Toyota Red Zone once the ball is snapped.”

That all sounds good except for the “once the ball is snapped” part. Will we still see it as teams huddle up and approach the line of scrimmage. Hopefully not.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said there were never any plans to use something like this during the regular season, as teams (and their “exclusive partners”) are responsible for preseason telecasts. Bullet dodged, for now.