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Judi's avatar

Does anyone else find these commercials offensive?

Asked by Judi (37642 points ) November 30th, 2011 from iPhone

I just saw a Capital One credit card commercial where they portrayed a credit card as “the Employee of the Month.”
There is another commercial (sorry I forgot the product) where they are congratulating a building for getting an employee award.
Am I crazy or is it really insensitive, in this time of high unemployment, where corporations are now considered “people” and sending jobs overseas to be de personalizing employees?
Maybe I’m off base but I find this highly offensive, do you?

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13 Answers

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I don’t really watch regular television, so I haven’t seen these commercials. I can see your perspective, though, simply from your description. I can see why they would be bothersome.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Like @ANef_is_Enuf, I don’t typically watch regular television. Oddly enough, though, I actually saw both of these commercials recently while visiting with my parents for Thanksgiving. I admit, I had’t thought of either one this way. I don’t know if they are offensive, but they are pretty stupid—even for commercials—given the context you have pointed out. I guess it just speaks to the increasing disconnect between business and (actual) people.

zensky's avatar

No more or less offensive than any other stupid commercial.

wundayatta's avatar

They are just trying to make the point that these tools are as valuable as the best employee or building in whatever. I don’t think you are meant to think they are taking the place of people. They are like people, not people replacements.

In advertising, you need a story, and you need to personify things so that people can identify with it. I know you don’t want to identify with a credit card or a building, but that’s advertising.

The real question to me, is why you are teed off at these commercials and not the billions of others, most of whom offend me in their stupidity levels and crass manipulation of emotions and thoughts. The first thing I tried to teach my kids about TV is to always be skeptical about every commercial. Didn’t take so well with my son who loves the technology commercials.

Judi's avatar

But just the idea that a card has as much value as a person is offensive to me.
I happen to be a sucker for a great commercial. I own a Blend Tec blender because I really like the will it blend videos and they won against their biggest competitor because of them.
I saw a really funny men’s underware commercial the other day and almost went online to buy them for my husband because I appreciated their cleaver promotional campaign. (Darn, now I don’t remember what they are!)
I have spent a good portion of my career writing ads and finding ways to increase traffic to my apartment communities so I don’t hate ALL advertisers. I just don’t understand why someone would insult their average customers like that.

wundayatta's avatar

Hyperbole. It’s what advertising is made of. It’s ludicrous and you know it. Why would you expect an ad to be otherwise? How does that make you feel offended compared to all the other ads out there that offer so much to offend?

Judi's avatar

(I edited my answer above and I think I answered your question.)

wundayatta's avatar

@Judi You sound like an ethical advertisement writer. How did you get out of the museum?

Judi's avatar

I don’t know, is it ethical making my husband stand in front of our apartments in a Santa suit while I dressed as an elf to try to increase traffic to our community?
I gave lottery tickets to people who came and visited, but I mailed them in thank-you cards to make sure I got a real address.
I think advertising can be fun and if someone uses a creative approach to get me to take a closer look at their product, they hsve an advantage in my purchasing decision.
If someone de values me I run to the competition.

deni's avatar

I think you have to be extremely sensitive to find that offensive. Commercials are always stupid as hell, that’s no dumber than most McDonalds commercials, which are annoying but certainly not offensive.

flutherother's avatar

I think all commercials are offensive and should be banned.

marinelife's avatar

Hmm, it hasn’t bothered me yet.

dappled_leaves's avatar

I haven’t seen either commercial, but I agree with you – it is so inappropriate right now, that it shows the company responsible is totally tone-deaf to the concerns of its customers. Probably not the message they meant to send, but too late now.

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