JetBlue

I was checking out this bold blue-and-yellow print ad by JetBlue, which looked amazingly corporate. Whatever . . . but I didn't think that's the image it was going for, especially with the cutesy motto, "We like you, too." Umm, no thanks. Not with grammar like this:

With airports like Long Beach, Ontario and now, Burbank, catching a hassle-free flight

jetblue_burbank

By setting off Burbank with commas, you're saying that it's nonessential, making the sentence:

With airports like Long Beach, Ontario and now, catching a hassle-free flight

Hunh? You need to set off now instead:

With airports like Long Beach, Ontario and, now, Burbank, catching a hassle-free flight

Or if you prefer the less-cluttered approach:

With airports like Long Beach, Ontario and now Burbank, catching a hassle-free flight

I think I've been in advertising for too long; I'm starting to think commas are ugly! That never would've happened in my 20s.

4 comments:

  1. How would you punctuate the following:

    Swimming is great exercise, keeps you cool in the warm weather, and is above all fun.

    I brought it up to the copywriter but she didn't think it needed anything, so, I left it. You can "hear" my dilemma, right? I'm also against too many commas. It seems too arty.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love that sentence! Basically, it's saying that swimming is "above" all fun. As in "out of reach" or "too good" for fun. Hahaha!

    Okay, I'm done laughing to myself now. I would fix the weirdness thusly:

    Swimming is great exercise, keeps you cool in the warm weather, and is, above all, fun.

    Oh, wait, you hate commas. How about dropping the serial comma:

    Swimming is great exercise, keeps you cool in the warm weather and is, above all, fun.

    I suppose you can also use em dashes instead of commas around the above all portion:

    Swimming . . . is--above all--fun.

    (Sorry, I don't know the HTML code for em dashes off the top of my head, so that will have to do.)

    You can also move above all, but it doesn't change much:

    Swimming is great exercise, keeps you cool in the warm weather and, above all, is fun.

    What was this ad for?

    ReplyDelete
  3. it was from a brochure for a cruise line. but i changed the actual text, just in case the copywriter is as paranoid as she looks.

    =)

    ReplyDelete
  4. What about...

    "With airports like Long Beach, Ontario, and now, Burbank, catching a hassle-free flight"

    Or since we love em dashes so much...

    "With airports like Long Beach, Ontario--and now Burbank--catching a hassle-free flight"

    ReplyDelete