Monday, December 1, 2008

A Letter to the editor of CA

As visual communicators it is our duty to dispel myths and promote truth. If we are the ones spreading ignorance and bigotry then what good are we as communicators.

Dear Editor

I received the most recent communication arts magazine Advertising Annual 49 and spent some quality time pouring over it as I usually do each month. However, this issue I came across something that bothered me. It was on page 13 and was an ad series done by DDB World Wide. The ads showed bugs getting ready to off themselves with bug killer for various reasons. While it was a cute idea one of ads was extremely offensive. It showed a bug lying in a hospital bed dying. I looked this over further and the chart on the bed said HIV Positive, the bug had a nose ring and choke collar, and on the night stand a picture of him with a "friend" wearing leather harnesses and nipple rings. I can believe that an anti gay and anti AIDS ad was running in Singapore but I cannot believe that Communication Arts would give it an award?! Not only was this ad extremely offensive, but it was inaccurate as people who are HIV positive are not necessarily gay and HIV does not mean one is going die. AIDS and HIV are very different things. These might seem like obvious statements, but if an ignorant and offensive ad like this can be made then apparently it is not obvious to everyone.
I would hope that in this day and age something like this would be vetoed in the brain storming period, but that was not the case. I am just truly surprised that this ad was chosen for an award. I know you have a very competitive entry process and I am surprised and saddened that this made it through your screening process.




Dave and Jo said...

Kudos to you for your letter to the editor. Although I haven't seen the image in question, I'm outraged at the description of it.

mandy said...

This letter is so smart and direct. I really love it. I'd like to send one too.

charrow said...

um you should! I think everyone should write to them. I still have not heard a thing from them regarding this.