Photo: Miami New Times

“…A Miami Beach-based company’s take on oceanfront advertising — a boat that hauls back-to-back, 46-foot-wide high-definition screens — hit local beaches months ago. But residents were not pleased with giant roving ads disrupting their views.

‘I mean, I just thought it was ridiculous,’ says Michael DeFilippi, a Miami Beach activist. ‘It was just complete commercialization of our city and really taking away from the natural environment and the peace of the beach.’

Comments about the boat poured in to the environmental-minded Facebook page DeFilippi runs, Clean Up Miami Beach. ‘Is nothing sacred?’ one person asked. DeFilippi, for his part, worried that increasing numbers of billboard-loaded boats would crowd the beaches.

Now Miami Beach has passed a rule banned advertising vessels from some of the waters within its jurisdiction. During a meeting Wednesday, the city commission voted unanimously in favor of the ban, proposed by Commissioner Michael Grieco.

‘All I know is that it’s really obnoxious and intrusive to people when you’re riding up and down in a billboard,’ Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez told the owner of the company in question, Ballyhoo Media. ‘You come to the beach because it’s a kind of tropical paradise. The last thing you need is a boat with a billboard right in your face.’

The vote came despite the arguments of Ballyhoo Media owner Adam Shapiro, who he loves the beach and believes his company will help instead of hurt it by offering a cheaper, quicker way to reach customers and make announcements…'”

— Brittany Shammas, Miami New Times. 

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