Newest Mediacy Insights Require Your Attention
A few days ago I posted about the slow removal of many of Contest Promotions' illegal advertising locations along with the rise in what I had assumed were legal Mediacy Gatescapes. Thinking I was doing nothing more than continuing to report on the state of OOH advertising in NYC, I was a bit surprised to see a comment on the post a few days later. Curtis, the commenter suggested I look closer at Mediacy locations, implying that I might be surprised to find many of the locations illegal (and that the company was giving legit OAC's a bad name)
Now I have not been keeping tabs on Mediacy for the past year as I have been under the impression that my initial response to Mediacy had scared them straight and forced them to permit the locations they were using to blight our city with Lady Gaga ads and other such uninformative commercial nonsense. Indeed the CEO Michael Gitter had assured me that after the DOB had come down on them for offering OOH services without an OAC license, he had made sure to fully comply with the city's laws. On Curtis's suggestion I took a look at the DOB website for 2 Gatescape locations I had previously run across, namely 304 west 14th street and 265 lafayette street, both in Manhattan. Turns out neither of the two locations have permits for 3rd party signage. Upon calling them in to the 311 specialty services to report these ads to the sign enforcement unit, I realized what is working in favor of these illegal, and illuminated signs. (illumination without a special permit is highly illegal and garners a much faster response from the city) The fact is that many of these illegal ads are affixed to the roll down gates of business' that are open during the day, making it nearly impossible for the DOB sign enforcement unit to properly enforce the law. DOB sign enforcement hours I assume are similar to those of a regular business, 9-5, Monday thru Friday. During those hours these bussiness' have their gates up and therefor the ads are not visible to sign enforcement officers trying to check up on locations which have been reported by concerned citizens. I made sure to make this issue clear to the operator taking my complaint but we will see how long this report takes to make it into the system.
In the meantime, and with this new information about Mediacy Gatescapes potentially being illegal, I would ask readers to help us clarify the legality of the many Mediacy Gatescape locations. If you come across a Gatescape advertisement, take a picture and record the building address to which the ad is affixed. You can then check for permits on the DOB Building Information System, or send us the image and address and we will be happy to look into the potential violation ourselves. Remember, keeping illegal advertising off the streets not only helps our city look better but sends a forceful message to the companies who choose to operate outside of the law that the citizens of this city demand compliance. When operating through proper legal channels, OAC's give New York the opportunity to decide how much advertising is too much advertising on our streets.