Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Righteous Kill Advertising - A Self Righteous Thrill?

image credit - flikr user coconono

The placing of an advertising poster promoting the film Righteous Kill in Stockwell Tube Station where Jean Charles de Menezes was killed has been roundly condemned by the British Advertising Authority

In their judgement they say that "We understood the siting of the poster at the station was unintentional"

An alternative explanation might be more skeptical.

Even a cursory glance at much of the output of the Advertising Business Bubble reveals it as frequently self absorbed with its own creativity. This obsession with shock (remember those Benetton adverts?) is superficially justified as acting upon the findings of social psychology which suggest that 'Salience' is necessary to attract attention in a world full of informational noise.

An almost exclusive obsession with Salience pre-disposes the less rounded members of the advertising fraternity to believe that their role is about attracting attention and little else. The ends therefore justify the means and ethical 'norms' become skewed in an atypical self -referencing business environment. These businesses are child like in their 'foot stamping' attention seeking behaviour.

The very fact that I am writing this blog post betrays what I feel (affective response guys!) is the reality of what the real motivation behind the advert placement was compared to the logical explanation given (cognitive response) that it was simply an unfortunate mistake. Do me a favour!

By acting and then seeking forgiveness, the people who placed the advert in Stockwell Tube station where Jean Charles de Menezes was killed reveal their true intentions. They knew that the approbation would attract more attention than the advert. Meta Salience is achieved through a self righteous thrill

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