Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Does My Mortgage Look Like a Slag in This?

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  • Stewart,

    I take your point, Emma, about the difference between 'be careful' and 'be afraid'. Trouble is that when they make these ads they can't accurately predict how the message will be perceived because of the variability of the target audience. Some women would see the ads & think "yeah, got to watch out for ourselves" while ther is a whole spectrum down to "OMG, I must don a sack any time I leave the house; I'm never going out drinking with friends again".

    To be specific enough in the ad would take too long and cost too much (exceeding the target demographic's attention span making the whole ad meaningless).

    And good point about the prevalence of these attacks being from non-strangers. The ads are specifically about the strangers and they could probably do with having other similar ads about "when your husband turns into Mr Hyde".

    BTW, Russell, I never took the inference from that ad that the bloke had taken a kicking, I just thought he ended up in an even worse state by the time he got home to the comfort of his bathroom floor. I'll have to think about your interpretation next time I see it.

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 572 posts Report Reply

  • JackElder,

    Ah, true. For some reason I was mentally confusing celts and gauls.

    Does that count as an own gaul, then?

    Wellington • Since Mar 2008 • 708 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Boom-tish!

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3661 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    they can't accurately predict how the message will be perceived because of the variability of the target audience

    Isn't that exactly what social marketers spend rather large sums of money doing? I guess not so much any more given the ripe potential for savings such projects represent..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16741 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Trouble is that when they make these ads they can't accurately predict how the message will be perceived because of the variability of the target audience

    I've never seen anyone complain about the Dennis From Accounts ad, or the one where the woman comes home pissed and phones her ex-boyfriend. Neither of those ads is designed to scare the bejeesus out of you. But ALAC brushed off formal complaints over the Lisa ad (see upthread), and those complaints came from within the target demographic for the ad. That's... just not good Public Service Announcing.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    The thing is, Sacha, that a young lady with good self-esteem & a knowledge of martial arts will not get the same message as a more retiring but still keen on boozing wallflower. And the ALAC ads are trying to be all-inclusive IMO.

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 572 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    The thing is, Sacha, that a young lady with good self-esteem & a knowledge of martial arts

    Um....yeah, I am young (ish) lady with good (possibly too good) self esteem and if not a knowledge of martial arts, a good few years of kickboxing classes at the gym.

    And the ad made me want to tear my own eyes out.

    And the ALAC ads are trying to be all-inclusive

    I think what the ad was trying to do was to remind people that when you are drunk you put yourself at risk. It failed spectacularly, mostly because it ignored the actual risks (as Emma pointed out) women face.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Perhaps The Listener should send Rebecca MacFie on assignment to Malaysia, where they've got an innovative solution to the Pissed Skank Crisis (tm):

    Beat the bitches until they learn how to behave!

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12031 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I think what the ad was trying to do was to remind people that when you are drunk you put yourself at risk.

    Yup, and that's what the message should be.

    On the odd occasion when I find myself beholding the flocks of drunken popsies in handkerchief dresses and high heels tottering around the Viaduct at midnight, my response is basically twofold.

    One: to be amused by the sheer spectacle of it.

    Two: to be concerned for their safety.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18957 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    In fact I'm pretty sure I would be even more freaked if I was driving that thing.

    Probably stretching the analogy but...

    You'd also be freaked out if they announced the pilot has done his practice with the radio controlled planes and this will be his first go with with big ones...

    And you'd also be freaked out if you discovered I was doing your surgery, Dr Janssen will be doing your vasectomy, his extensive knowledge of plant genomes will guide him through this task ...

    So it is interesting that instead of freaking out that our guys are not being taught that harassment/assault/rape is bad...
    We send a message to women to avoid inciting said ill-trained males. And some women think it's OK to reinforce that message.

    It's misplaced responsibility. As a society we fail to train our males and we place the responsibility on those with vaginas to cope with the result. Instead we should insist on properly trained males.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3414 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Does that count as an own gaul, then?

    Rofflenui.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7383 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    I would have felt a lot more comfortable about the Lisa advert if it had focused more on the male. "Here's where alcohol might take a person who would never do this when sober, but under the influence of alcohol they do something horrible to another person." As Emma and many others have been pointing out, the ad seems to be attacking a symptom (dangerous men) rather than the problem (what's causing men to be dangerous - probably not actually alcohol deep down, so possibly outside ALAC's sphere of interest).

    I seem to recall a series of adverts (maybe drink driving) a while ago which explored the same scenario but with two adverts where a different decision was made at some point and one advert showed a bad result, one a good one. The ALAC adverts seem like a good candidate for that. Maybe if the guy stays in control and doesn't get tanked up on booze he and Lisa get it on with consent?

    Since Nov 2006 • 6201 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    the flocks of drunken popsies in handkerchief dresses and high heels tottering around the Viaduct at midnight.

    But that's part of the thing that annoyed me about that ad. I get plenty drunk and totter around town on occasion, but I would never leave one of my friends in that situation, and I'd be furious if they did it to me.

    I am exactly that ad's target audience, being of the getting way too drunk after work and making stupid decisions age, and there are so many ways they could have reinforced the safety message to me that wouldn't have made me want to hurl my television through a window every time it came on.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Dinah Dunavan,

    Maybe the next round of ALAC ads will have a bloke getting hammered and then waking up the next morning to find himself charged with rape.

    Dunedin • Since Jun 2008 • 172 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Maybe if the guy stays in control and doesn't get tanked up on booze he and Lisa get it on with consent?

    Dude, the guy in the Lisa ad isn't drunk, he's dead sober. (Is that just my perception, that he's portrayed as doing what he does entirely coldly and deliberately?)

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    there are so many ways they could have reinforced the safety message to me that wouldn't have made me want to hurl my television through a window every time it came on.

    Yes, that's what I meant - not that the ads were defensible, but that the idea of reinforcing the safety message isn't wrong per se. Sorry to have brought ALAC into this, it's sort of an automatic angry comments generator and I can see why.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7383 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    (Is that just my perception, that he's portrayed as doing what he does entirely coldly and deliberately?)

    Yes, he's portraied as somebody who preys on drunk women in bars.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7383 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    Is that just my perception, that he's portrayed as doing what he does entirely coldly and deliberately?

    No, the shifty glance around, and the ominous music as he drags her up the alley say that to me too. Why yes, I have spent far too much time thinking/talking/watching/arguing/screaming about this ad.

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Does that count as an own gaul, then?

    Rofflenui.

    You Romans are crazy.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18957 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen,

    the guy in the Lisa ad isn't drunk, he's dead sober. (Is that just my perception,

    My impression too

    Sober, calculating, feral

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3414 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Okay, I have to pop out for a couple of hours - son's IEP, book in a tattoo. While I'm gone, Megan and Danielle are in charge of voicing my opinion, k?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Megan Wegan,

    While I'm gone, Megan and Danielle are in charge of voicing my opinion, k?

    Ooooooo, the power!!

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    But that's part of the thing that annoyed me about that ad. I get plenty drunk and totter around town on occasion, but I would never leave one of my friends in that situation, and I'd be furious if they did it to me.

    I reckon there's a useful public service ad in that.

    Although -- and this is a welcome cultural development not often acknowledged -- while young women may be pushing it harder these days, they're also more inclined to stick together and roam in girl-gangs.

    I think there might also be mileage in: "If you get too drunk, you risk falling over, vomiting down your dress and generally ruining your evening. Oh, and the photos will be on Facebook before your hangover subsides."

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18957 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    I would have felt a lot more comfortable about the Lisa advert...

    ... if it had been killed at the pitch meeting? Because that's where I am, and seriously can't mentally re-mix the ad enough to get the stink of APB out.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12031 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Dude, the guy in the Lisa ad isn't drunk, he's dead sober. (Is that just my perception, that he's portrayed as doing what he does entirely coldly and deliberately?)

    Yes, but that in that case he (the problem) is really outside ALAC's sphere, as I noted.

    The problems of why violence occurs are many in our society, alcohol is only one of them.

    Just seemed to me a better advert would be 'look what this guy did when he lost control under the influence of alcohol, think about how your behaviour changes when you drink'.

    (I did some work on family violence many years ago, and argued with my employer, the NZ police, that alcohol wasn't the problem society should be addressing in relation to violence (it simply releases inhibitions that hold people who, when sober, restrained underlying violent tendencies), so this suggestion also doesn't sit very comfortably with me either, but it would be better.)

    Since Nov 2006 • 6201 posts Report Reply

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