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I publish a small, full color glossy magazine. One of my advertisers, a hair salon, would like to place the American Flag and the Dominican flag in the ad. They ...
  1. #1
    Roberty Nolan is offline Junior Member
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    Default Proper American flag display in print advertising

    I publish a small, full color glossy magazine. One of my advertisers, a hair salon, would like to place the American Flag and the Dominican flag in the ad. They are US citizens but have a Dominican following. They are proud of both.

    The flags are not part of the ad design but will be placed in the ad. I am not comfortable with placing the American flag in an advertisement and am asking for help in what is the proper display of the American flag in advertising, specifically when a flag of another country is present.

    Our deadline is in 2 days so any quick help is greatly appreciated.

    Thank you very much.

    Robert Nolan

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    hi there and welcome to USA flag site.

    the flag code says- The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.

    if the salon is wanting the flags there simply to show their pride then you could let them - and place the US flag in top left corner of the ad and the dominican flag in the top right of the ad

    its up to your discression really and whether you think that your readers might get offended by seeing the flag printed in an advert- they might see it as advertising with the flag to promote their business - without knowing the hair salons intentions of simply showing pride...
    the hair salon could show their pride by displaying the two flags at the salon

    what do you think?

  3. #3
    roger.rowe is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    The Flag Code does not cover printed material.The Flag Code covers items that are flags, and not depictions of flags.
    Simply put, the printed material and what is depicted upon said material has never been a flag and never will be a flag, so is not covered by the flag code.

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    NAVA1974 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    Quote Originally Posted by roger.rowe View Post
    The Flag Code does not cover printed material.

    Not quite true. According to the Flag Code:

    "(i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown. "

    An illustration in a book or magazine is, of course, appropriate. A flag illustration in conjunction with an advertisement could be questionable but I think you can get away with without offending.

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    roger.rowe is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    I did respond hastily and failed to give a more detailed explanation of my interpretation. i shall provide an explanation of my stance. Simply put, I believe that the printed depiction of the US Flag is not a flag and as such does not violate the Flag Code. I hold this belief based upon reasoning that follows.
    First, “What is a flag?” the answer to this simple question is fundamental to the explanation of my stance on this matter. I believe that:
    (a) That a flag must be capable of being displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall (Flag Code, §7 - Position and manner of display, i.); and
    (b) That a flag must be capable of being hoisted upon flagstaff (Flag Code, §6 - Time and occasions for display, a-b); and
    (c) A flag is capable of being flown at half-staff (Flag Code, §7 - Position and manner of display, m.1.); and
    (d) One may cover the casket of a veteran with a flag. (Flag Code, §7 - Position and manner of display, n.).
    The aforementioned sections of the Flag Code give specific attributes of a Flag, and how the flag must be displayed in different circumstances. Item (a) means more than what appears to be stated, as this means to be a flag the item in question must have the image of the flag correctly portrayed on both sides; a flag is not a one sided image for one could not move the flag from the horizontal display to a vertical display otherwise. The US Flag must always have the union in the upper left corner when displayed upon a wall.
    With regards to §8. Respect for flag, (i). I hold the belief that this provision is referring to an actual flag; the term embroidered is referring to the actual flag being sewn to a separate article as opposed to a flag patch as referred to in (§8. Respect for flag, (j).); and that the flag shall not be made from a temporary material inappropriate for draping over a casket.
    So, while some may find flag clothing inappropriate and lacking in taste others consider this as a demonstration of their patriotism. As long as a person does not actually take a genuine flag and fashion it into an article of clothing, or use an actual flag in an advertisement, then I beleive that there is no violation of the Flag Code.


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    NAVA1974 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    roger.rowe
    Your definition of a flag seems to make it is impossible to print a flag on a napkin, an act specifically prohibited by the Flag Code.

    The way I interpret the code is that you may, indeed, print a picture of a waving flag on a napkin, or box, or postage stamp, or a doormat for that matter. However, you may not print the napkin or box or stamp or doormat so that it appears to be the flag itself. Here are pictures of two US Civil War patriotic covers, the first is an image of a waving flag that is acceptable, but the second appears to be the flag itself, which is inappropriate.

    CWPatPoem.JPG

    CWFlagVerse.jpg

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    roger.rowe is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    You must have missed my definition of a flag (a-d). I do not believe that either image is inappropriate, as they do not meet my simple definition of a flag.
    I know i do not always make myself clear.
    From my point of view, the flag code defines the flag, how it is to be displayed, and not displayed, and all of the provisions work together and are applicable at all times. Since all parts of the code must apply at all times, a flag must be of the appropriate structure to represent a flag, two sided, of the appropriate dimensions, and capable of being displayed upon a flagstaff, etc.
    Since I would never assume that a napkin depicting the image of the flag was to be flown upon a staff, I do not believe that one may not print images of the flag upon a napkin.
    Basically, the napkin was never a flag, was never intended to be a flag, and will never be a flag, so the code does not restrict the placing of an image upon the napkin or anything else that does not meet the criteria for being a flag. one can print an image of a flag on the napkin provided the napkin is not intended to be a flag.

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    NAVA1974 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    "You must have missed my definition of a flag (a-d)."

    I did, indeed, see your definition. And it has merit if you want to narrowly define "flag" as a tangible object that flies from a staff, etc. However, I think the definition should be more inclusive.

    You are welcome to define a flag that way, but your definition conflicts with that of the group that wrote the Flag Code in 1923. They believe a printed representation of a flag IS a flag. The flag code says "The flag should never be used for any advertising purpose. It should not be embroidered, printed, or otherwise impressed on such articles as cushions, handkerchiefs, napkins..."

    If you delete the extraneous material it reads:

    "The flag should never be ... printed ... on ... napkins..."

    That tells me that a printed image is a flag, and must be treated with respect as if it were a cotton flag flying from a pole. It does not matter that the napkin was not intended to be used as a flag by affixing it to a stick.

    The definition of "seal" is equally broad. For example, the Great Seal of the United States is the steel matrix that is used to emboss the image of the seal on little wafers affixed to documents. It is also the embossed image of the Great Seal. It is also painted illustrations of the seal.

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    roger.rowe is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    I shall remain focused upon the definition of the flag, and leave discussion of the seal to another forum.

    Now, we get to the crux of this discussion and the differences of opinion.“[i] want to narrowly define "flag" as a tangible object that flies from a staff, etc. [You] think the definition should be more inclusive.” We are looking at the same flag code, and yet interpret the provisions of the code differently.

    For example, you provided two images, and I disagree with you when you state that one image is inappropriate, as it ”appears to be the flag itself”. I hold that something that “appears” to be a flag is not a flag, but a replica (Flag Code, §8 - Respect for flag, j.). Therefore I disagree with your assertion that “They believe a printed representation of a flag IS a flag” and “that the printed image is a flag “. I stand by my opinion, they are replicas.

    However, I recognize that a flag pin should be worn like a flag, but it is still a replica of a flag and not an actual flag. The code specifically states that a flag pin is not a flag! Yet you hold the opinion that a printed image is a flag. An image is not a flag, an image is a replica. A replica that should be afforded some respect, but a replica may not demand the same respect as an original. So, as the code states that “The flag should never be used for any advertising purpose” the code is not referring to a replica.

    When I delete the extraneous material it reads: "The flag should never be ... anything that is designed for temporary use and discard."

    While I do not know the minds of the group that wrote the Flag Code in 1923, I do not believe that they ever envisioned someone that would not know the difference between a flag, a pin, and a napkin!

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    NAVA1974 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Proper American flag display in print advertising

    Roger:

    You wrote "When I delete the extraneous material it reads: "The flag should never be ... anything that is designed for temporary use and discard." This implies that a printed image is NOT a flag.

    As I noted before, I read the code as saying "The flag should never be printed on anything designed for temporary use."

    This implies that the printed image IS a flag and should not be dishonored.

    Let us agree, then, that our interpretations differ, and that we shall respectfully disagree on this issue.

    Regards,

    Nick

    ps I wonder if anyone else wants to jump in on this discussion?

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