San Francisco City Attorney’s Office targets Levi’s over illegal graffiti ads 

Guerrilla advertisers and city officials are in a constant war, and the latest battle was waged Thursday over sidewalk ads for Dockers, which is part of Levi Strauss and Co.

After spotting the illegal graffiti advertising on sidewalks in Hayes Valley and the Mission district, City Attorney Dennis Herrera fired off a letter to Outdoor Media Group, or OMG, demanding the advertising be removed and to “desist from further sidewalk vandalism.”

The ads, which advertise a website, look as if they were made with orange spray paint, and ask: “Are you making a salary or history?” The website offers a chance to win $100,000 “to finally do what you love.”

Herrera has a history of sending these letters to keep The City free of such advertising.



“Since 2001, this office has successfully resolved similar violations by corporations that include IBM, NBC Universal, and Turner Broadcasting,” the letter sent Thursday said.

In August, Herrera went after the advertising campaign for the online game “Mafia Wars” when a number of paper $25,000 bills were glued to city sidewalks advertising a $25,000 cash drawing and a game-related website.

“San Francisco policy makers have attempted to limit the presence and placement of graffiti so as to protect the unique character of The City and to avoid the dangers created when such blight attracts the attention of pedestrians walking on busy sidewalks and streets,” the letter said.

The letter also said local businesses are “understandably upset” by the illegal advertising.

The City Attorney’s Office announced the latest advertising fight by tweeting, “The City Attorney’s Office is demanding cleanup by the marketing firm stenciling Levi’s ads on our streets.”

OMG representatives did not respond to a request for comment.

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

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