For those needing a break from your typical news story, MINI has sponsored a positive news section on For the uninitiated, Slate is an online news magazine and frequent contributor to NPR. Especially noteworthy are Seth Stevenson’s Ad Report Card articles that he often reads on NPR’s Day to Day, Slate’s daily podcast hosted by Andy Bowers, and political commentary by John Dickerson.

This new MINI-sponsored section features more than 20 positive stories. The articles range in topic from the world possibly being a safer place than we think, to die-hard roosters, to stories of unlikely heroism. MINI’s sponsorship is overt with advertisements for the MINI Motoring Hearts outreach program on almost every page.

MF Analysis: The tone of the whole section just grabs me as “From the happiest car on earth, some news to brighten your day.” As with so much of MINI’s marketing in the past, I’m a willing participant. I know it’s advertising, but it’s advertising with something to offer. So much of the MINI brand message has been “Let’s make the road a better place” and this is another small example of that attitude. Slate’s readers are also a good non-owner audience to invite into MINI’s new community service initiative. I don’t know how long this section will run, or if MINI will be its only sponsor should it continue. But I do know that I appreciate MINI’s contribution to bringing the world some positive stories.

[ Let’s be the Bearer of Good News ]