Sunday, February 03, 2008

Got a Light?

Become an Ex is a quit smoking endeavor put together by the American Legacy Foundation in conjunction with the Mayo Clinic. These are frames from their current banner ad campaign designed to make smoking parents feel bad. Idiot redneck smoking parents who blow smoke in their children's faces, apparently.

I think these kids are cool. And I know their friends think they're cool too. 'Cause they smoke. Next time I'm at 7-11 and some kids are in there, I'm going to say, "Hey, kids! Need me to buy you some smokes?"

Why doesn't someone do an anti-smoking campaign with a new twist? Smokers know smoking is bad for them. Smokers know that smoking is bad for their children. Smokers know that tobacco companies are evil. Most smokers want to quit. Try acknowledging that upfront with a statement like "You'll eventually quit. We're here when you're ready," or "We know you love it, even though you know it's killing you."

Those smug twits from commercials and their über-hip "guerrilla" efforts only serve to make the vehement anti-smoking Nazis happier as they walk away going, "Yeah! We showed them!"

Guilt, fear and shame have never been very good motivators.

Unless you're Catholic.

Previously in Smoking:
Barack Obama: The New Marlboro Man
Retro TV: Wonderful, Wonderful Smoking Pleasure

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  • The Salem ad is so fresh! Makes me want to light up and start swinging.

    I like the early advertising featuring kids and animals smoking, cuz it was "cute".

    By Anonymous dirtsister, at February 3, 2008 at 7:30 PM  

  • Fortunately for catholics there's denial.

    By Blogger James-H, at February 4, 2008 at 2:22 AM  

  • Sorry for commenting so often on your site. But with regard to this post in particular, I feel I have some first hand knowledge.

    I smoked 3.5 packs a day for over 25 years. I am not a redneck, but did, in spite of attempting not to, put my children in harms way with my secondhand smoke. I knew it was bad, but, like a heroin addict, I simply found it impossible to stop.

    Thankfully, I almost died 15 months ago and my cardiologist helped me to realize that I must quit.

    I think that every smoker probably is motivated by something different. I'm not sure it's possible to create a campaign that will work on the majority.

    But I do know that when I see the commercials, I want to hit those self-important pricks in the face with a bat.

    BTW - I'm now (cigarette) smoke free since September 10, 2006.

    By Blogger TexanInHippieland, at February 4, 2008 at 4:13 AM  

  • Here in Hong Kong we had a really positive anti-smoking advertising campaign last year.

    All the ads were thanking everyone who stopped smoking. The ads depicted children hugging parents who had quit, employees congratulating their boss for giving up, friends giving high-fives to new ex-smokers, wives thanking husbands for putting out their last cig, etc.

    The message was to celebrate freedom from nicotine instead of shaming those who know that smoking bad for them.

    Hong Kong has since banned smoking in all public places. And where everyone--myself included--was a smoker a few years ago, there are far fewer who still chuff away at the cancer sticks.

    By Blogger Jay, at February 4, 2008 at 5:10 AM  

  • I've never understood anti-drug/smoking/drinking ads.

    Reminding people that something they know is bad for them really is bad for them is not going to have much affect on behavior. And so many of those ads just ring false. Both in the scripts and the exaggeration of consequences.

    By Blogger Toad, at February 4, 2008 at 8:38 PM  

  • Fortunately for catholics there's Sunday mass—or confession.

    By Blogger Make the logo bigger, at February 4, 2008 at 9:44 PM  

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