Please we feel to comment, critise or send us your additions and suggestions for future blogs; as a dealer, I also buy new material, send your offer to ads@srok.nl.

Commentaar en aanvullingen op deze blog zijn van harte welkom. Heeft u advertentie materiaal of oude tijdschriften waar u zelf niets meer mee doet, stuur dan een email naar ads@srok.nl. Voor mooi materiaal betaal ik een goede prijs. Heeft u zelf belangstelling voor oude advertenties, kijk dan eens in de on-line catalogus van SROK Ads op www.srok.nl of bij onze advertenties op Marktplaats.

woensdag 20 november 2019

A first inventory of products that are labeled 'modern'

Although our corpus is still very small (see the second last post), we can already see a pattern emerging. A quick tally shows the following results (in no particular order)

  • washing machines -2
  • cars - 76 (of which 18 in the series "Be Modern - Buy Chrysler" and 7 in "Modern living" series by Lincoln)
  • toothbrushes - 1
  • cookers/ranges - 1
  • silverware/flatware - 4
  • fashion - 9
  • car parts or accessories, motor oil -2
  • furniture - 1
  • Elsie, the Borden cow ("Women are much more modern than men") - 1
  • cookware -3
  • tableware, glasses - 3
  • flooring - 1
  • ships, aeroplanes, transport - 3
  • cosmetics - 3
  • personnel ads - 1 ("healthy work for modern women")
  • food - 3 ("modern packaging") 
  • beverages - 1
  • cigarettes -2
  • bathrooms - 1
  • soap - 1
  • refrigerators - 1
  • radiators, heaters - 2
  • hardware - 1
  • lamps - 1
  • cleaning - 1
  • packaging (cellophane) - 1
  • beer - 1
  • radio - 1
  • sewing machines - 6 (5 of which a series by Singer)
  • curtains - 1
  • detergent - 1
  • professional coffee machines - 1

As you can see, most products occur only once or twice, and often it is not the product that is labeled 'modern', but the packaging (cellophane) or the potential buyers ("modern people buy beer").

Cars and fashion are the top runners,  followed by small household items such as cookware, flatware etc.

Our source material may have been slightly biased towards cars, but not enough to explain the 76 - 61 ratio of cars versus all other products.

Obvious categories that are completely missing are insurance, banking, telecommunications, computers(!) - apparently there's no such thing as a "modern computer" :-)

Food and beverages are a difficult category, because how can you label a food as "modern"?

'Modern people eat potatoes' or 'A modern potato for today's healthy dinner' - it just doen't sound right.

When I started collecting, I used very broad categories to store my collection:

  1. Food, drink and smoking
  2. Transport 
  3. Health and body
  4. Fashion
  5. In and around the house
  6. Everything else
 If we add the numbers first list by these groups, we get the following results:

  1.  6
  2.  78
  3.  6
  4.  9
  5.  30
  6.  3
We will examine the ads more closely to try and find an explanation for the higher number in group 5 (In and around the house) - I'm guessing it has something to do with products that are very visible to the people that use them and the people we entertain in our homes. After all, what's the use of being modern if other people can't tell that we are?