Everyone that had a hand in this ad needs to be fired
A few days ago a number of disturbing videos of a bullying incident became viral on Facebook. We’re not going to link to the videos because it involves minors, but let’s just say that it’s currently what a large swath of the discussion on Facebook is right now.
As horrifying as that bullying video was, one brand has apparently decided that this is exactly the push that their product needed.
Appeton’s official Facebook account outed the ad you see above, with the caption “Bugbog o Dignidad? 5,4,3,2,1…”, referencing the words used by the bully in the viral video before he kicked the ass of his fellow student. The idea is if you’re bigger than your bully, they’ll be too scared to touch you! Who can argue with that logic?
Well, Appeton, you gigantic collection of <insert chosen profanity here>, real life doesn’t work that way. Personally, I was bigger than most of my classmates back in high school by a fair margin, but I was still horribly bullied, enough that my brain has pretty much blocked out a majority of my high school life because of the trauma it caused me.
And since we’re already on the subject of trauma, bullying is NO JOKE. It’s a subject that should be approached with care and empathy, as bullying victims suffer horrendous amounts of physical and mental trauma. I managed to cope and recover well enough, but not everyone is as lucky – according to studies, students that are bullied are around 2 to 9 times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims. Many young people who are victims of bullying see suicide as their only way out, and sadly many of them succeed in taking their lives.
Appeton’s Facebook ad is INSENSITIVE to the plight of people who have been victims of bullying. Aside from the tone-deaf timing of the ad, the graphic body shames skinny people as worthy of ridicule. The ad also seems like it’s celebrating bullying culture.
Every single person that had a hand in making this ad should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. At the very least they should retract the ad and issue a public apology. Even better – the people behind the ad – from the AE’s that conceptualized it to the people who greenlit it need to be fired for being so callous about such a sensitive issue.
Then again, these are the same people who outed another tone-deaf ad, calling Filipinos bobo in an attempt to bump sales numbers for their dietary supplement. Maybe it’s time to completely boycott this insensitive, tone-deaf brand?