Diesel Be Stupid: Fokken Stupid

Is this really that stupid?

On the highway to the office this morning I saw the Diesel “Be Stupid” campaign has reached Joburg’s poster-boards. And damn if it ain’t the most retarded campaign I ever did see. Since when is aligning your brand with stupidity a good thing?

You know the one thing that does really well, Diesel? – It isolates intelligent people from your brand.

I don’t want your sunglasses or your jean pant or anything you sell, because it puts me in a very specific category – the stupid one! Clearly your branding agency has no idea how to distinguish between being stupid and having fun, which is what you’re really trying to say but clearly lack the intelligence to do. But they probably sold it to you as “edgy” and “risque” which makes you stupid for believing them.

That's more like it

We also have no need to promote a culture of stupidity in South Africa right now.

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Win a 3 year School of Advertising Bursary

AAA School of Advertising (the name must be a legacy yellow-pages hack) and Springleap just sent me details of a competition for aspiring designers and marketers at high schools across the country. Design a T-Shirt, market it to get votes, most votes wins. The prize: a 3 year bursary to learn everything the AAA School of Ads can teach you, which is hopefully a hell of a lot. That’s a damn good prize, kids.

I’ll let the, uhm, video, explain a bit more. You may want to turn your speakers down a bit – clearly the caffeine has been flowing thick and fast at Springleap HQ… 🙂

More details can be found here: Teen T-shirt competition.

So once you’ve got a design, then what? Here’s a few ideas once voting starts:

  • SMS/MMS your buddies about the design/competition.
  • Facebook your friends – work it – start a group for your t-shirt design – pimp your facebook status out to the mercy of your friends’ votes.
  • Mxit up and start the discussion on the design.
  • I hate to say it, but get your school involved – the lower classes can’t enter the competition, but a vote is a vote…
  • Go old school – contact your local newspaper and let them know – you’d be surprised at the results.
  • Stand on a street corner and sell your body for votes.

I think you get the idea.

Oh, and there’s something there about Drug Education too. Yes, teenagers, you should always know the difference, between kat, tik, and cocaine. 😉


Diamonds are only De Beers’ Best Friend

Ever since watching the absolutely horrifying Blood Diamond (the movie where Leo DiCaprio can for like to talk wif a Souf Efriken accent), I’ve had a rather bitter taste in my mouth when it comes to any glassy rock, and their biggest monopolistic producer, who, it is claimed, deliberately stockpile the rocks to increase scarcity and therefore value. (And in doing so have probably directly and indirectly funded decades of wars in Africa).

This has led to some very strong negative sentiment towards ever buying a diamond (sorry ladies), and I tend to take out this sentiment on the poor salespeople behind the counter who try to divert my cubic zirconia preference elsewhere: “A Diamond? What? Have you ever seen the movie Blood Diamond!!!???”

Of course De Beers claim with a straight face that all their diamonds are 100% conflict free, but why would they ever say anything else, right?

As a monopoly, and a very controversial one at that, De Beers should be ready for parody in any way shape or form. Apparently they aren’t. De Beers was recently criticised in the following advert featured in a fake edition of the New York Times which was distributed in New York City on 12 November 2008:

The real New York Times had a good chuckle about the whole pardoy, but in contrast De Beers responded, well, with the typical legal sideswipe in the internet era – go after the domain registrar that hosts the domain name entry for the site, because they simply cannot ever get a real win against comment covered by free speech rights (that’s free speech in De Beers’ home, South Africa, never mind the First Amendment stuff the yanks use).

The sad truth is that large corporates will continue to exploit these backhand techniques, chasing the softer targets instead of taking a head on confrontation, or even better, actually embracing the criticism and firing directly back at it with facts and truths.

Sucks to them. As a consumer I’ll just keep my conscience clear and stick with the man-made rocks. (And besides I don’t have money for jewels like that, or even someone to give it to!!!)

By the way, given the fast growing economic depression, poor sales predict an artificially large drop in diamond production in the De Beers stable.