I’ve Been Calling and My Neighbors are Getting Pissed

I guess you have to yell really, really loudly

The tsunami killed 100 times more people than 9/11
ummmm… what is that?


Bill Cosby would have been perfect for this ad

Starbucks Prints a 9/11 Ad

Here’s What Happened

In 2002, Starbucks released this ad:

bad ads starbucks
From snopes.com

Which, because of the 1) two cups, 2) strangely square-tipped blades of grass that resembled buildings, 3) zooming dragonfly, and 4) ad copy “Collapse Into Cool”, made people think Starbucks was…poking fun? (or just really that ignorant?) at the 9/11 catastrophe.

Why It Missed the Mark

Obviously it’s wildly offensive. Was it just a huge coincidence? I don’t even know—I still don’t understand the logic behind this one.


Stay alert for symbolism that might be—whether intentionally or unintentionally—depicted by the words or images in your ad.

Hyundai Belittles Suicide Victims

Here’s What Happened

In 2013, Hyundai ran a commercial in the UK that essentially said, “Our cars are so safe you can’t even commit suicide in them.”

The point was that the sedan doesn’t produce harmful emissions like other cars do, and unfortunately the campaign’s creators thought a good way to get that point across was to show a man’s unsuccessful suicide.


14 Comments on I’ve Been Calling and My Neighbors are Getting Pissed

  1. The last time I was in Starbucks I couldn’t figure out if the woman ahead of me was placing an order or chanting a Wican curse!

  2. any advertising that gets people discussing the product is good advertising

    “Caesar endorses these ginsu knives”

  3. A few years ago, Honda had a commercial where the driver and passengers break into Weezer’s song “Buddy Holly”.

    Not a good song choice considering the commercial was for the Honda Pilot.

  4. Subliminal brain-washing exists everywhere in advertising. Nothing is ever accidental or coincidental. Just as in everything else, nothing is taboo any more. Actually, being explicit has become common practice.

    Subliminal Messages in Advertising and Their Widespread Use
    Of late, there has been an upsurge of subliminal messages in advertising, which were a few decades back, considered to be immoral or inappropriate as per social ethics. Nevertheless, these still are, indirectly, an integral part of this vast industry.

    “While advertising and marketing have progressed by leaps and bounds, the trend of subliminal messages in this industry too has become a popular tool for garnering maximum profits.”

  5. The workzone.com view of why the Pepsi ad was a mistake was incorrect. most sane people don’t care about sjw nutters. The response I heard was that no one would accept food or drink from those filthy thugs.

  6. Many commercials in the last few years are so strange that neither DH nor I even know what the company is selling.

  7. geoff the aardvark – YES!!! That stupid Emu ad! Another bad one is Sheryl and her stupid she-shed. I feel really bad for her husband.


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