August 7, 2022

Media Decoder: Time Lends Cover for Apocalyptic Image

A mock issue of Time is used in a poster for the latest Call of Duty video game.

No, the world is not nearing an end.

But anyone could be forgiven for thinking so after catching a glimpse of a strikingly authentic-looking mock issue of Time, which declares “World Stands on the Brink” and is being shown in GameStop stores across the country.

The cover image depicts an apocalyptic Wall Street, buildings charred and half blown out. The landmark American flag in front of the New York Stock Exchange is pock-marked from a bomb blast.

But the issue is actually a promotion from Activision, the maker of the video game Call of Duty. Time agreed to allow Activision to use its signature red-bordered cover and nameplate in a mock poster for the latest version of the game. It is the first time an authorized Time cover has been created to promote a commercial product.

Some might see it as a questionable use of one of the most coveted and symbolic pieces of real estate in journalism. But Time said that the question had been carefully considered and given approval after editors and executives realized they would be reaching a demographic that has eluded newsmagazines: young men.

“This is where the boys are,” said Kim Kelleher, Time’s publisher. “This is a great way to connect with millions of people we might not have otherwise connected with.”

Newspapers and magazines have long allowed the use of their front pages and covers in movies and on television.

Time’s “Person of the Year” issue, for example, has been given over to various fictional characters through the years. Richard Stengel, Time’s managing editor, said this was no different.

“I see this as a similar idea in a different medium — a medium that is one of the biggest entertainment franchises of all time,” Mr. Stengel said.

Activision created the cover, with art direction help from Time, as a memento for people who have pre-ordered Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. The game arrives in stores in November and imagines a war-torn planet in the not-so-distant future.

“I like the concept of Time being a related brand of something that’s happening in 2030,” Ms. Kelleher said. “That makes me happy.”

Article source:

Speak Your Mind