Sheryl Rooth knocks it out of the park regarding the London Rippers, L, Nov. 24
Steve Orser has another temper tantrum at city council, LCW, Nov. 24
London Rippers may be one-season wonders at best, LFP, Nov. 22
Putting London, Ontario, on the international map
How the World sees London, Ontario: Bandito Mass Murders; Banana Toss at Black hockey player at the JLC; Melnitzer Bank Fraud; Giant Sinkhole in downtown London; High Unemployment; Jack-the-Ripper baseball team.
Hey Martha, let's pack up the kids and move to London. It seems like a nice family friendly city to live in. Bwahahahahahahahahahaha!
Beer and Baseball is a No-Brainer. Jack the Ripper and Baseball, not so much
THOUGHT DU JOUR: Can you imagine the support locally if David Martin, the owner of the Rippers, named the baseball team the "London Brewers"? Labatt Park, London Brewers? The local hospitality trade would be lining up to sponsor the team, maybe even Labatt's.
If this guy who purportedly owns the London Rippers is a top marketing guru as professed, I'm El Presidente of Argentina.
The London Rippers have a one-year lease at Labatt Park, renewable at season's end. It's doubtful the City
of London would renew the lease with the current Ripper-logo branding.
Jack-the-Ripper logo for a team named the London Rippers is an insult to Londoners and dark-side marketing at its worst
By Barry Wells
Founder, Friends of Labatt Park
November 16, 2011
Last Tuesday night (Nov. 15) at the London Convention Centre, David H. Martin, president and general manager of the new Frontier League baseball team slated to play 48 regular-season home games at Labatt Park next season, unveiled his team's name and logo to about 120 people.
Remember, this was at the height of the local "Shine-the-Light-on-Woman-Abuse" campaign spearheaded by Megan Walker and the London Abused Women's Centre, a campaign supported by the City of London, many local businesses and thousands of Londoners.
With much hoopla, it was announced the team was called the "London Rippers" with an iconic Jack-the-Ripper team logo (a sinister character named "Diamond Jack") accompanied by the slogans "Get Ripped" and "Lurking at Labatt Park This Spring."
I was there, set to embrace the return of pro baseball to London, despite the fact that I've been a London Majors fan for more than 40 years, even more so since I founded the non-profit, volunteer group, the Friends of Labatt Park in 1993.
As such, I spend several hundred dollars at Labatt Park each summer.
I left the convention centre shaking my head and by the time I got home, I realized I'd be boycotting this team as long as they continue using one of the most notorious serial butchers of women in modern history to market the team.Marketing campaign from Mars
According to a recent poll on The London Free Press website, 48 per cent of 1,152 poll respondents want either the team name, team logo or both changed.
These aren't good numbers for this new ball team, given that marketing baseball is a tough gig at the best of times in London, let alone after you've alienated nearly 50 per cent of your potential $pon$or$ and fan$ ~ if you accept the poll accurately reflects public opinion.
And I do ~ with 1,152 poll respondents.
Everyone with three brain cells to rub together likes a smooth takeoff and the London Rippers have clearly struck out six months before their scheduled home opener on Saturday, May 25th.
While the team has received an incredible amount of publicity with the story of the team's controversial name and logo going viral on the Internet, most of it is negative publicity and rightly so.
Not surprisingly, based on my casual observations at least, more women than men ~ particularly young men ~ appear offended by the name and logo of this new team.
"Jack the Ripper" butchered at least five women in London, England, during the late 1880s and was never apprehended for his grisly crimes. So let's resurrect him in London, right?
On the other hand, many young men seem to like the name and logo. Whether or not they'll go to a few games, however, is another story. Which is why this team's success hinges on broader support.
Personally, I'm offended by this dark-side marketing for a number of obvious and not-so-obvious reasons.
For starters, baseball represents re-birth and renewal, when ball players and fans alike ~ in temperate climates at least ~ return to the ball park, leaving the drudgery of winter behind.
The sun comes out in all its warmth and glory, the birds sing and the grass grows green again. Positive vibes all the way around.
As such, historic Labatt Park and its lush natural-grass playing field have evolved into sacred ground for me and many others during its 134-year history at the forks of the Thames.
Even more so now that Labatt Park has been designated "Canada's Favourite Ballpark" after winning Baseball Canada's popular month-long, online contest last September.
Further, I recently paid the City of London $400 to plant a memorial red oak tree at Labatt Park to honour my late mother (pictured left) who passed away last April.
Mother, who was regularly slapped around and punched by my alcoholic father during the 1950s and early 1960s (before she finally ditched him, with two young sons in tow), attended many ball games at the park with me during the past 20 years, a time when her and I became the best of friends.
So Labatt Park is a place where people go each summer to have good times and share good memories while watching the timeless game of baseball in the great outdoors.
To introduce the image and thought of Jack the Ripper into this City-owned park is both extremely misguided and offensive, akin to a guest in your home pissing on your carpet one minute after arrival. As welcome as 10 battalions of army ants at a family picnic.
While it's suspected the London Rippers will change the team's name sometime next week ("London Phantoms" is rumoured to be the likely choice), something tells me this team is already a modern-day casualty of Jack the Ripper.
Check out this page from the convention centre's website (up in advance of the media launch last Tuesday, Nov. 15). And the team owner has the audacity to say this ripper nonsense is only about ripping a baseball.