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  1. #1

    Default Is Michigan a brand?

    Why are Metro Detroiters so afraid of saying "Detroit"? Am I the only one who noticed this?

    I was walking through Metro the other day and saw a sign above the exit to ground transportation in the McNamara terminal proclaiming "Welcome to Michigan". Does Grand Rapids have a sign in their airport also saying "Welcome to Michigan"?

    Then just now I was browsing the Detroit Free Press and saw an article about the Michigan Bucks playing in the stadium where the Detroit Lions once played.

    http://www.freep.com/article/2012052...MLS-extra-time
    Last edited by iheartthed; May-30-12 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #2

    Default

    Actually, I've noticed quite a bit of the reverse. There are a number of businesses outside of the city building their brand identity around the name Detroit. Can the city copyright it's own name?

  3. #3

    Default

    You can't trademark a city's name. But the city could do a campaign that they could own the rights to, like how the state of New York did the "I <3 NY" campaign.

  4. #4

    Default

    My wife gets mad at me when I say we're from "Detroit" when we're travelling. However, I'm proud to say I'm from Detroit.

    My wife argues that I should say we're from "Warren, just north of Detroit". But I think "Detroit" has a much nicer ring to it.

    I don't think she's ashamed of Detroit, but she just feels it's inaccurate to say I'm from a place that I don't actually live in.

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartthed View Post
    Why are Metro Detroiters so afraid of saying "Detroit"? Am I the only one who noticed this?

    I was walking through Metro the other day and saw a sign above the exit to ground transportation in the McNamara terminal proclaiming "Welcome to Michigan". Does Grand Rapids have a sign in their airport also saying "Welcome to Michigan"?

    Then just now I was browsing the Detroit Free Press and saw an article about the Michigan Bucks playing in the stadium where the Detroit Lions once played.

    http://www.freep.com/article/2012052...MLS-extra-time
    The real good one is "se Michigan." This is another item on my long list of annoying things about this state. The Boys Scouts' Detroit chapter just recently changed its name to "se Michigan." UGH!!!

    It's like Detroit is a forbidden word to use. I've even heard people us "det" now versus Detroit when talking about the city proper. Somtimes it's fun to just come right now and say "Detroit" and watch people's reaction in general discusssions about what's happning in the region.

    No other major city does this.

  6. #6

    Default

    This is a unique feature of this region - unllike anywhere else I've been to. We've been 'dealing' with the collapse/loss of the core city by pretending it's not there. The change to 'North American Auto Show' in 1987 for example. Or like 'not needing' a state fair one month, and then magically clamoring for one in Novi.

    Like everything else here, fed by a great underground river of racial anxiety. On this board I've read that even St. Louisians, with all their similar troubles, don't have a problem saying 'St. Louis'.

    Even more amusing is the exurbanites (or satellites like Flint/ Port Huron) that pretend they aren't even part of the constellation. Even 'SE Michigan' is too close to just saying 'D' for comfort.

    Of course there's plenty of businesses that do understand the cache of Detroit without wanting to be in the city proper. And the people who would say 'Detroit' but are afraid someone's going to pull the 313 Card on them. So there's many cross-currents invovled.

    My wife kept telling people 'Detroit' on a recent business trip, and her co-worker kept jumping in with "uh just 10 miles north". Oh no, not Chernobyl, just 10 km downwind. There, fixed it.

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartthed View Post
    Why are Metro Detroiters so afraid of saying "Detroit"? Am I the only one who noticed this?

    I was walking through Metro the other day and saw a sign above the exit to ground transportation in the McNamara terminal proclaiming "Welcome to Michigan". Does Grand Rapids have a sign in their airport also saying "Welcome to Michigan"?

    Then just now I was browsing the Detroit Free Press and saw an article about the Michigan Bucks playing in the stadium where the Detroit Lions once played.

    http://www.freep.com/article/2012052...MLS-extra-time
    The Bucks have been called that since they played in Saginaw.

  8. #8

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartthed View Post
    Why are Metro Detroiters so afraid of saying "Detroit"? Am I the only one who noticed this?

    I was walking through Metro the other day and saw a sign above the exit to ground transportation in the McNamara terminal proclaiming "Welcome to Michigan". Does Grand Rapids have a sign in their airport also saying "Welcome to Michigan"?

    Then just now I was browsing the Detroit Free Press and saw an article about the Michigan Bucks playing in the stadium where the Detroit Lions once played.

    http://www.freep.com/article/2012052...MLS-extra-time
    Just think how the people of Romulus feel??

    Does the term MADE IN DETROIT ring a bell?
    http://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid...&bih=655&ion=1

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqr-gguaeDY

  9. #9

    Default

    It's dysfunctional boardering on schizophrenic. You're from Detroit, yet you're not!

    However if Detroit had as many residents as they had people who actually said they're from "Detroit" the coffers would be overflowing, the city would be repopulated, and most of the current problems would virtually disappear. Alas, Detroit has far too many boosters and not enough residents.

    I resent those who claim they're "from Detroit" when they're out of town. It's inaccurate. I don't see what is so hard about saying "Metro Detroit" or "the suburbs of Detroit" or "just outside Detroit". It's called being a poseur. Yet these are the first people who, when back home, will jump and scream about how different Warren is from Detroit and how they would never actually live in Detroit (despite paradoxically claiming to be from there), as we have seen from recent threads.

    I ran into some dumpy tourist on a plane who said she was "from Detroit" and she talked about how bad things are there. Upon futher investigation, she was from Waterford, which, in relation to Detroit, may as well be Mars. Of course she's qualified to talk to people about how mean our streets are. Now if she had just told me she was from Waterford in the first place she could have saved me the trouble and I would have known to ignore her right away.
    Last edited by poobert; May-30-12 at 12:44 PM.

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poobert View Post
    It's dysfunctional boardering on schizophrenic. You're from Detroit, yet you're not!

    However if Detroit had as many residents as they had people who actually said they're from "Detroit" the coffers would be overflowing, the city would be repopulated, and most of the current problems would virtually disappear. Alas, Detroit has far too many boosters and not enough residents.

    I resent those who claim they're "from Detroit" when they're out of town. It's inaccurate. I don't see what is so hard about saying "Metro Detroit" or "the suburbs of Detroit" or "just outside Detroit". It's called being a poseur. Yet these are the first people who, when back home, will jump and scream about how different Warren is from Detroit and how they would never actually live in Detroit (despite paradoxically claiming to be from there), as we have seen from recent threads.

    This is kind of silly. There are people to claim to be "from Chicago" who live 50 miles in any direction (well, except east I guess). I don't currently live within the Detroit city limits but I work here and always say I'm from Detroit when traveling. I probably spend more time in the city than I do anywhere else. If you're in Europe there are more people who have heard of "Detroit" than "Michigan" in my experience.

  11. #11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gistok View Post
    Just think how the people of Romulus feel??
    Technically, the airport is addressed as being in Detroit. But the airport for most cities isn't actually in the central city. Newark Airport is in a completely different state from NYC and there is a sign inside the terminal saying "Welcome to New York".

  12. #12

    Default

    My favorite is when I'm traveling and run into someone who has lived here or is familiar with the area. So, when I say I'm "from Detroit," the response is "which city?"

    When I insist that I'm actually "from Detroit" I sometimes get reactions ranging from disbelief (due, I suppose, to my pale skin) to a look of distrust and fear (due to, well, you know...). And more than once I've also heard some sort of rather crude racial commentary in response too.

  13. #13

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poobert View Post
    It's dysfunctional boardering on schizophrenic. You're from Detroit, yet you're not!

    However if Detroit had as many residents as they had people who actually said they're from "Detroit" the coffers would be overflowing, the city would be repopulated, and most of the current problems would virtually disappear. Alas, Detroit has far too many boosters and not enough residents.

    I resent those who claim they're "from Detroit" when they're out of town. It's inaccurate. I don't see what is so hard about saying "Metro Detroit" or "the suburbs of Detroit" or "just outside Detroit". It's called being a poseur. Yet these are the first people who, when back home, will jump and scream about how different Warren is from Detroit and how they would never actually live in Detroit (despite paradoxically claiming to be from there), as we have seen from recent threads.

    I ran into some dumpy tourist on a plane who said she was "from Detroit" and she talked about how bad things are there. Upon futher investigation, she was from Waterford, which, in relation to Detroit, may as well be Mars. Of course she's qualified to talk to people about how mean our streets are. Now if she had just told me she was from Waterford in the first place she could have saved me the trouble and I would have known to ignore her right away.

    I was born raised educated and married in Detroit.
    I have worked played lived and nearly died in Detroit.
    I no longer live within Detroit but I have traveled the world and whenever asked I always reply I am from Detroit.
    If ANYONE has a problem with that they can kiss my "MADE IN DETROIT" ASS!

  14. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Wheels View Post
    I was born raised educated and married in Detroit.
    I have worked played lived and nearly died in Detroit.
    I no longer live within Detroit but I have traveled the world and whenever asked I always reply I am from Detroit.
    If ANYONE has a problem with that they can kiss my "MADE IN DETROIT" ASS!

    Cool story, bro.

    Check your driver's license. That's where you live.

  15. #15

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poobert View Post
    Cool story, bro.

    Check your driver's license. That's where you live.
    AHHH. But it's not where i'm from.

  16. #16

    Default

    Anyone ever heard of Lynwood, WA? Folks there are Seattleites in the same way I'm a Detroiter. Nobody's heard of Ferndale out here.

    I worked in Detroit, paid taxes in Detroit, supported the Detroit Lions, Tigers and Red Wings (not so much the Pistons back in the day), and consider myself a Detroit area native.

    I really wish people would dump the "us vs. them" attitute that has come to pass over the years. I consider metropolitan areas to be organic "wholes", not a bunch of pieces that border on each other only because of a fluke of geography.
    Last edited by douglasm; May-30-12 at 03:33 PM.

  17. #17

    Default

    Detroit is a state of mind. A beautiful, promising, frustrating, maddening state of mind

  18. #18

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poobert View Post
    It's dysfunctional boardering on schizophrenic. You're from Detroit, yet you're not!

    However if Detroit had as many residents as they had people who actually said they're from "Detroit" the coffers would be overflowing, the city would be repopulated, and most of the current problems would virtually disappear. Alas, Detroit has far too many boosters and not enough residents.

    I resent those who claim they're "from Detroit" when they're out of town. It's inaccurate. I don't see what is so hard about saying "Metro Detroit" or "the suburbs of Detroit" or "just outside Detroit". It's called being a poseur. Yet these are the first people who, when back home, will jump and scream about how different Warren is from Detroit and how they would never actually live in Detroit (despite paradoxically claiming to be from there), as we have seen from recent threads.

    I ran into some dumpy tourist on a plane who said she was "from Detroit" and she talked about how bad things are there. Upon futher investigation, she was from Waterford, which, in relation to Detroit, may as well be Mars. Of course she's qualified to talk to people about how mean our streets are. Now if she had just told me she was from Waterford in the first place she could have saved me the trouble and I would have known to ignore her right away.
    Ok Eminem...

    People who live in the metro area can say Detroit all they want. If you live in the burbs of any city anywhere its all the same. If I said I was from Rockwood MI nobody would know what the hell I was talking about. But the fact I am 10 or 15 minutes from the city means nothing to me. 10 minutes from Chicago, you still say you are from Chicago.

    Get over it.

  19. #19

    Default

    New York is another story. If you're from Brooklyn, you say your from Brooklyn. Queens is a toss up, don't know about the Bronx. No one admits to being from Staten Island. Manhattanites, of course, are from New York, or just "The City," and they barely put up with people from the other boroughs saying they are from New York. If you're from Long Island, Yonkers or Hackensack and claim you're from "New York," you might just end up in the East River

  20. #20

    Default

    I feel like the metro area has become like the way suburbs of Australian cities are set up. Let's take Melbourne. A suburb of Melbourne is within a greater city, there are many of them and within them the "suburbs". "City of Melbourne" has the central business district, North Melbourne, and around 10 other districts. So someone from an outer city would still say they live in Melbourne and are still technically part of the city even if they don't live within the inner city cities. So, while one may come from Warren or Royal Oak or Dearborn or Downriver, we are still from this greater Detroit. Sorry I don't come from the true city per se, but that's the Fates' fault.

  21. #21

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poobert View Post
    It's dysfunctional boardering on schizophrenic. You're from Detroit, yet you're not!

    However if Detroit had as many residents as they had people who actually said they're from "Detroit" the coffers would be overflowing, the city would be repopulated, and most of the current problems would virtually disappear. Alas, Detroit has far too many boosters and not enough residents.

    I resent those who claim they're "from Detroit" when they're out of town. It's inaccurate. I don't see what is so hard about saying "Metro Detroit" or "the suburbs of Detroit" or "just outside Detroit". It's called being a poseur. Yet these are the first people who, when back home, will jump and scream about how different Warren is from Detroit and how they would never actually live in Detroit (despite paradoxically claiming to be from there), as we have seen from recent threads.

    I ran into some dumpy tourist on a plane who said she was "from Detroit" and she talked about how bad things are there. Upon futher investigation, she was from Waterford, which, in relation to Detroit, may as well be Mars. Of course she's qualified to talk to people about how mean our streets are. Now if she had just told me she was from Waterford in the first place she could have saved me the trouble and I would have known to ignore her right away.
    Poobert... stop preaching to the choir!

  22. #22
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    Default

    I was born in Detroit, raised in Detroit, live in the burbs now, but when asked I say Detroit, if you don't like it to bad, grew up on the eastside by ham town, so I still feel, like I can claim it, like some one wrote earlier in a post, if your in Europe and say your from Michigan, most don't know if you say Detroit, most do know,

  23. #23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GUSHI View Post
    I was born in Detroit, raised in Detroit, live in the burbs now, but when asked I say Detroit, if you don't like it to bad, grew up on the eastside by ham town, so I still feel, like I can claim it, like some one wrote earlier in a post, if your in Europe and say your from Michigan, most don't know if you say Detroit, most do know,
    Exactly.... apart from the states of New York, Florida, Texas, California, Hawaii and Alaska... most Europeans don't know Michigan from Montana...

    But Detroit... almost everyone in Europe has heard of Detroit...

  24. #24

    Default

    I'm from the suburbs of Houston but I just say Houston when talking to non-Texans because, as noted, people outside of the region wouldn't be familiar with my actual hometown.

    I did notice that when I told people from SE Michigan that I was moving to Detroit, they almost always said "Oh, which city?" Takes some getting used to.

  25. #25

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Gistok View Post
    Exactly.... apart from the states of New York, Florida, Texas, California, Hawaii and Alaska... most Europeans don't know Michigan from Montana...

    But Detroit... almost everyone in Europe has heard of Detroit...

    True. In the press, Detroit often means the "Big 3" automakers as a unit, so there is an ambiguity there. But definitely Detroit is a brand name that is known planet wide and event though it is often used as a synonym for american automotive industry, the fame associated with it has established its reputation as a powerhouse of industry and a great city for a hundred and ten years. Add to that the musical and cultural history, it is a major brand name that few cities of its size enjoy.

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