Cruise Company Uses Image of Falling WTC Tower to Promote Concerts

By Aidan Gardiner on June 12, 2014 7:03am 

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 Rocks Off used an image of the World Trade Center engulfed in flames on its website, but took down the image when DNAinfo asked about it.
Cruise Company Featured Burning Twin Towers on Website
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MANHATTAN — A concert cruise company that sails around New York Harbor, including past the World Trade Center Site, yanked an image of the Twin Towers collapsing from its website amid an outcry from 9/11 victims.

Rocks Off Entertainment's website featured the unmistakable silhouette of the Twin Towers, one of which was mid-collapse, as part of their New York skyline.

The images outraged relatives of 9/11 victims, including Jim Riches, 63, whose firefighter son Jimmy died on 9/11.

"It's a disgrace and disrespectful to the families of the people who died that day," said Riches.

"These guys are trying to get money by being provocative and showing the towers blowing up and then turning around and saying let's go have a nice rock concert."

The company runs concert cruises throughout New York Harbor featuring live music ranging from Grateful Dead tribute bands to the Electric Six.

Rocks Off did not respond to requests for comment, but took down the image of the towers less than three hours after DNAinfo New York's attempts to contact them Wednesday.

Rocks Off has regularly used provocative imagery in promoting its events. Its Twitter avatar shows a unicorn copulating with a dolphin under a rainbow, and the company sells a T-shirt with a closeup of Yoko Ono's face and the phrase "Chapman Missed," in reference to the man who assassinated her husband, John Lennon.

Companies have often struggled to handle 9/11-related imagery.

Many people were outraged when the gift shop of the 9/11 museum started selling cheese plates shaped like the continental United States with black hearts demarcating the 2001 attacks. They later stopped selling it, Gothamist reported.

And many were unsettled when the television show "Mad Men" put up large billboards around Manhattan featuring a falling man that recalled the leaps World Trade Center workers took from their offices as they filled with smoke and fire.

Relatives said Rocks Off should have known that the 9/11 image would upset its audience.

"You cross the line where people were murdered and killed — you can't make fun of that," Riches said.

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