Wednesday, February 13, 2008


(click ads to read copy)
Today in the New York Times, Stuey "scoop" Elliott reports on the creative efforts of U.S. ad agencies to aid global water projects. So, to be timely, I'm posting these two international "bad water" ads that've been drying in my "to be posted" file.
(L)—LOOKY! It's 9/11! Once again exploited in the name of deadlier death (last time, you may remember, it was an insensitive anti-smoking ad out of Dubai). Here, it's part of a goofyfuck diorama ad for French humanitarian organization Solidarités. Puppet planes! I knew it was a conspiracy. (image via)
(R)—Unicef in Sweden goes right for the heart with the tried & true doe-eyed African youngin' (close-up face shots are popular with "cause" ads). And, while the water pistol isn't exactly a sparkling fresh metaphor, at least the Swedes didn't need a fucking math equation to get the point across. (image via)
related: Amnesty International takes on Genital Mutilation and China.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh come on now. the 9/11 'exploitation' ads are not as bad as you make them out to be. given the billions spent on the 'war on terror' weighed against the lesser sums spent on public health issues (which, as the ad points out, lead to many many many many more deaths that 'terror') there is a place to make the point.

further, the ad does it pretty effectively.

1:30 PM  
Blogger copyranter said...

Agreed, the exploitation is not that bad, but that French ad, creatively speaking, is idiotically goofy——in my caustic professional opinion. This is a serious issue. Plus, If the visual of an ad has to be explained (or put into a fucking equation) it is not a quick read, and therefore is not an effective ad. That's what I was taught, anyway.

2:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That 9/11 ad is awful. Anon, what does the ad have to do with the GWOT? The sinking of the Titanic and the attacks on the WTC have nothing to do with each other, nor with non-potable water.

There's no message in the ad that says we spend too much fighting terrorism. It just uses these traumatic events as a numerical value. The ad turns mass death into a cute art project with a clever algorithm. It's insensitive.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I actually like the second ad. It's quick and to the heart--the proverbial new twist on an old idea.

But the first one...takes too long to get it. They should have found a simpler way to state their point.

4:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

1. Why is it that the planes need strings, yet the top of the equal to sign is magically suspended?

2. Is the target audience French, British or American? If it's French, why are they using American tragedies to illustrate their point? (Okay, I suppose we can share Titanic with England a little) But more importantly why is the ad in English, yet the website you're directed to is entirely in French? Couldn't they have made an english website, since they're obviously targeting an english-speaking audience?

And if this has gone through a million times, I'm sorry, my work computer bites.

4:45 PM  
Blogger copyranter said...

re: why it's in English——I think this may be a version of the ad translated just for publicity purposes. You'll note the "8 million(S) persons a year" mistake.

4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suppose that would make sense. Naivety on my part, my apologies. I didn't think that the use of millions was correct, but I shrugged it off as possibly being correct grammar that doesn't mesh with the vernacular.

I thought "non-drinking" was odd also, but after I visited the website I realized it's just a literal translation of a sentence that makes perfect sense in French. (French is one of my useless minors)

5:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whatever. Drop some condoms on these countries that can't figure out that not having kids = more water for mama and papa.

7:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need to melt the icebergs over there before they melt here.

7:38 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

Divide by three, carry the two... Yes, that ad sucks.

9:52 PM  
Blogger  said...

You don’t like Dr. Fouture Cookie Fill Phil!?!?!?!?!

Hey, check the “Islamic Toy” ad at my blog.

Stay on groovin' safari,

7:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

no ones up in arms about the tasteless exploitation of those lives lost to the ice berg! just the beginning of the ravages of global warming.

4:07 PM  

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