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When Will They Ever Learn?

Oct 7, 2020

The past months have been full of #BLM media stories and sharing, with the hopeful outcome that people not only understand the purpose of the movement, but the reality on the ground. Together with notions of cancel culture, society has moved in a more sensitive direction, and brands in particular are staying away from campaign ideas and communications that may cause offence, or touch on sensitivities that are more predominant in society today.

But there’s always one idiot who screws things up.

And that award goes to … (refer to visual)

The picture speaks for itself. No elaboration, or context required.

Only a lesson.

In today’s climate, this is unacceptable. We are moving to a post-truth society, where reference to historical events is considered potentially as offensive as the event itself.

In creating a campaign, it’s essential to develop text and imagery that does not touch on contentious issues.

Sometimes people, and brands, make mistakes. But in this case, it’s just plain stupid, or ignorance, that enabled such a campaign rollout.

Beware of the cultural and historic references you make in a communications plan. Even if you intend something to be humorous or light-hearted, note that your audience may not.

These guys found out the hard way.

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