ChapStick stirs up controversy
An advertisement by the lip balm maker triggered a social-media drama that was simply unnecessary.
Yes, ChapStick. The lip-balm maker, owned by Pfizer (PFE), decided to run an advertisement prominently showing the behind of a woman searching for her ChapStick behind a sofa. "Where do lost ChapSticks go?" asked the ad.
It was a bizarre photo (you can see it here) but not really any big deal. We've seen far worse in other advertisements.
Along came the inevitable blog post complaining that the image was degrading to women. The blogger also pointed out that ChapStick has been deleting any critical comments on its Facebook page (even after encouraging people to "be heard at Facebook.com/chapstick").
For many, the idea that ChapStick was censoring was worse than the image itself. So more visited the page to comment, and more saw their comments deleted. I imagine someone over in ChapStick PR has a bad case of carpel tunnel today.
Finally, ChapStick responded by removing the ad and issuing an apology. "We know we don't always get it right," the ChapStick team said on its Facebook page. ChapStick also said it complied with Facebook guidelines and removed posts with foul language and repetitive messaging.
AdWeek seized upon the phony defense. "So, to those ChapStick fans whose comments were deleted -- it was all your fault, you obnoxious, foul-mouthed, menacing spambots!" wrote Tim Nudd. "Seriously, maybe just shut down the whole page at this point."
MediaPost's Catharine Taylor says the whole issue is really stupid. "So, what do we take away from all this?," she asks. "That sometimes people get offended by pictures of people's backsides, and that social media strategies should never be run by the legal department."
offended by a girl bending over! Seriously?
I like this ad. Its fun and lighthearted.
It is now comfirned. We are a nation without any healthy social boundaries. This may be the cause of so much rage in our society. The person who totally flips out in the fast-food restaurant. The teen who has absolutely no respect for adults or authority and finds absolutely everything "boring" unless it has an immediate gratification for him/her. We have become so incredibly innane about things that don't matter. Teens know the price of everything, and the value of nothing. The sad thing is they have learned this behavior from their parents.. We have definitely lost something America and we need to get it back, soon. When a Chapstick ad can have so much impact, it is frightening. Where is our common sense? When did we lose our collective sense of humor? It time to bring back the ability to "mind our own damn business." and run our own lives. Again, why is this news?
When I saw the headline, i thought it was a woman in daisy duke shorts or something and it turned out to not even be spandex. What in the world is the big deal?
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