Black Tape and Non-Sponsors

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Black Tape and Non-Sponsors

Black Tape and Non-Sponsors

What’s black tape and who are non-sponsors?  Those are two questions I will answer today.  Keep reading to find out more.

Black tape sounds like it is related to red tape, but it’s not as complicated as red tape.  In this case black tape is black masking tape.  We’ve all seen that blue stuff they sell in the paint section of the hardware store.  Think of that, but only think of it as jet black.

This is a great marketing and advertising opportunity.  It’s unique.

Route 66 and Black Tape

What the scrud does black does black tape have to do with Route 66?

copyright 2017 db walton

Black Tape In Use

Black tape is what all of our equipment will have over the logos of the equipment we use.  Just like in TV shows when you see someone shooting a dSLR camera and you can’t see what brand it is… yeah… that’s what black masking tape was invented for – covering logos.

This resolves an issue of unauthorized use of trademarks.  The resolution to this is simple…

If you want us to show your equipment and talk about it, you want to sponsor us.    Sponsorships start at $100 and go up to $3000, and are accepted in trade or kind.  (Note, sponsorships in kind must be of equipment that we can use on the trip.)


Non-sponsors are those who are not supporting this venture.   As we travel along, if you change your mind about sponsorship, you can shoot us an e-mail.

So, let’s think about this…

Suppose Brent has $5000 worth of camera around his neck, and black masking tape is covering all the branding on the camera.  He’s photographing a model at an iconic location and someone wonders, “What camera is he using?  Those images are great!”

As a result, those would-be buyers will be left in the dark.  Sad, isn’t it?

Easy Resolution

The resolution is easy.  Here is how you get us to remove the black tape.  Because trademarks and logos can be touchy situations, please read carefully…

  • We need a letter authorizing and releasing us from any liability associated with display your logo and trademarks as displayed on your equipment.
  • You need to sponsor our Route 66 2017 Tour.  He’s a brief summary of what it takes…
    • $100 gives you a mention on one specific day of our tour, and we remove the black tape starting on that day, and for the remainder of the trip.
    • Additional $100 contributions give you additional mention.  $100/day.  (Mention means we specifically mention your product and company name during our daily video and in our blog.  We will include links too.)
    • $3000 gives you exclusive daily mention for the entire trip.  We will mention your company/products daily.  We will not mention any competitor in that category.  (See below for a list of categories.)
    • The amounts listed above can be in the form of a company check (must be received by 8/20/2017), a gift card (i.e. Visa gift card), or in kind (i.e. give us the equipment you want us to use.  Retail value will be considered the same as cash.).
    • AND… most importantly… Each day you sponsor you receive license to USE ANY OF OUR PUBLISHED IMAGES SHOT ON THAT DAY.  (We will provide you with a download code to download them and use them to promote your company.)    Why would we do this when a license like this normally cost as much as $1000/image?   Because we want to get people excited about Route 66.

Here are the categories where exclusivity can be granted…

  • Camera bodies and lenses
  • Portable lighting equipment
  • Camera portage (i.e. camera bags)
  • SD cards (high speed suitable for 4K video, 32GB and larger)
  • Laptops or large tablets
  • USB storage drives (2TB drives and larger)
  • Internet access (mobile hotspots and bandwidth)
  • Automobile transportation (i.e. rental cars, manufacturer loaner car, etc.)
  • Gasoline (any U.S. oil company who can guarantee us gasoline for the entire trip will be exclusive)

And, here are the non-exclusive categories…

  • Lodging – mention will be by the sponsor who paid for that night’s lodging.  Sponsorship based on 2 hotel/motel rooms per night.
  • Meals – mention based on who paid for the meal(s).
  • Logo wear – want to send us branded logo wear?  Contact us.
  • Non-specific expenses – any company’s contribution can earn mention at the rate of $100/day.


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Loving Route 66

Loving Route 66

Loving Route 66 is easy for me.  I miss the days of carhops, drive-ins and full-service gas stations.  Even on Route 66 you won’t find a lot of those still in existence, but seeing the remains of an era  gone by is worth the drive.

copyright 2016 db walton

Full Service Days

I remember the attendant opening the hood, pulling the shop rag from his pocket, wiping the dipstick and measuring the oil level.

“You’re a quart low,” the attendant would say, “would you like me to add a quart?”

copyright 2016 db walton

Ned’s Oil & Stuff

They checked the radiator, the tires, cleaned the windshield, and more.  It came at a price, but gasoline was 33 cents a gallon.  They sold tires, belts, radiator caps, light bulbs and they installed them too.

Route 66 is a reminder of an era past.  That’s why I’m loving Route 66.  I love Route 66 and this trip proves it.


About 12 years ago I drove Route 66 with  my younger kids.  My daughter and son pointing to objects and asking, “What is that?”  I explained that oil came in cans, phones had “dials” and how to dial a phone number, and soda bottles were in a cooler filled with water.

Fully restored artifacts exist at some stops.  I enjoy seeing an old Coke machine, and a rotary pay phone hanging on the wall.  These things bring back memories, and who doesn’t like good memories?

For Your Entertainment

Here is some jazz guitar.  Brian Setzer is probably best known for the group Stray Catz.  His rockabilly style is a bit subdued in this piece, but I think you’ll enjoy the guitar playing.

Here’s a new on for me. Brian Setzer does Route 66…

What If Wish List

What if Canon were to sponsor us.  I’d want to go full-frame AND the new mirrorless M5.  We’re not going to be picky about who and what the camera sponsor does, but this much will be necessary for an exclusivity of sponsorship…

It must include two complete systems (full-frame and/or ASP-C).  They must be the latest production models (or pre-production is okay too.)