Keller @ Large: Blue Is The New Green?

BOSTON (CBS) – According to The Economist magazine, blue is becoming the new green.

(Sorry, can’t find an online link; the article is in their special “World in 2012” issue. Call Sarah Palin, maybe she’ll lend you her copy.)

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

In Paris, you will soon be able to rent “Bluecars” from a car-sharing service with a blue logo.

Volkswagen puts a “BlueMotion” label on its most energy-efficient cars, and Fiat calls its line of blue-colored low-emission tractors “EcoBlue.”

This color-branding trend is expanding beyond the automotive industry too, to products like solar-powered telephones and natural dog food.

What is going on here?

The Economist quotes a color-brand consultant saying “green is so obvious…blue has got a bit more seriousness to it.”

Apparently, blue is also branded as a color that denotes cooperation – Facebook and the UN have blue-dominated logos.

And blue is seen as a global color, something universal, like the deep blue sea.

I’m sure the branding and marketing experts behind this blue revolution know what they’re doing, but I’m not sure I like it.

First of all, blue may well connote environmental friendliness, sharing, and universality, but it has other meanings too.

Isn’t blue the color of maleness – you know, blue for boys, pink for girls?

Wouldn’t that make this trend somewhat sexist?

Brides are supposed to wear something blue for good luck on their wedding day; isn’t the rise of blue an affront to single people then?

And here in America, Democratic strongholds are called blue states. Does this trend now mean environmentalism is taking partisan sides?

Then again, I was never that comfortable with the commandeering of green as a political term.

Around here at least, green used to be tied to Irish-American ethnic pride, and came to be associated with the world’s best pro basketball team.

It also used to connote envy and inexperience.

Somehow, I don’t see blue taking over those roles.

But never fear, this color branding game appears to be subject to constant revision.

The Economist reports the green status of blue will soon be overtaken by white, also apparently seen as a “clean and efficient color.”

So if these color games give you the blues, don’t see red and don’t be yellow, speak out.

Either you like it or you don’t.

It’s what you might call – a black-and-white issue.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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