The Petrie Dish

Every week there are articles published that are of interest to promotional products industry professionals across the land. To save you time, I have culled the internet for the ones you should read and the ones you should skip.

Shipping Giant’s Bankruptcy Throws Trans-Pacific Trade Into Disarray – “Must Read” Article of the Week

While many people may not be familiar with Hanjin, almost everyone will be impacted by their bankruptcy filing in the United States and their home country of South Korea. The world’s seventh-largest container shipping line (representing about eight percent of the trans-Pacific trade to the U.S.) has stopped accepting new cargos and its ships are blocked from offloading over payment concerns. While many talk about disruption, rest assured this bankruptcy filing will most certainly disrupt trade and the promotional products industry.

Alabama-USC: The Story Behind “Our OJ Only Killed Clemson” T-Shirt

Full disclosure: I not only dislike the Alabama Crimson Tide, I loathe them. It’s fine if you like them, but I’m not on board with the arrogance displayed by the head coach, the team, and most of the fans. Even so, this is a very interesting read about a tasteless, if not slightly amusing, t-shirt that references former Heisman Trophy winner O.J. Simpson, who played football at USC, and Alabama senior tight end O.J. Howard. Sometimes promo can go too far and this is one of those cases.

FDA Bans Some Antibacterial Chemicals in Soaps

Perhaps it’s because I’m a Gen-Xer who grew up getting dirty and using a bar of Irish Spring to get clean or perhaps I just have an excellent BS detector, but I always knew that antibacterial soaps were hogwash. Essentially, there is no scientific evidence that soaps using triclosan and triclocarban (antibacterial active ingredients) are any better than plain soap and water. Plus, that antibacterial stuff smells bad – give me coconut lemongrass any day of the week.

Mötley Crüe Sued by Photographers Over Sale of Merchandise During Final Tour

The former bad boys of rock and roll are being taken to court by photographers Neil Zlozower and Barry Levine over photographs they took years ago, which the plaintiffs claim the band never got permission to use the photos on merchandise for their final tour. Filed on September 6, 2016, the photographers are seeking profits from merchandise sales that feature their pictures, as well as damages and attorney’s fees. If the band loses, does that mean the world will have to endure another “Final Tour” from Mötley Crüe to pay the photographers? I’ve heard Vince Neil sing in the past year, which is why I’m hoping for a quiet – and modest – out of court settlement. 

Best Practices: The Benefits of a Gift Catalog – “Don’t Waste Your Time Reading” Article of the Week

This is a VERY basic article that gives the three main benefits of a gift catalog that anyone who has been in the promotional products industry for more than five minutes knows. SPOILER ALERT! Here are the three benefits of a gift catalog: choice, branding, and, well, the third one really isn’t a benefit. In fact, it’s more of a guideline of “ensure seamless delivery.” Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with this little piece, other than the title which should be “Gift Catalogs: Two Benefits and a Fulfillment Suggestion.”