Apologizing for content has become its own strategy:
Question: I'm going to make an offensive ad tomorrow and post it online. how long should I wait before I apologize?— Kidsleepy (@kidsleepys) May 5, 2013
@kidsleepys Wait until you get front-page of AdAge, approximately 500K impressions, a Nancy Grace freakout... then apologize.
— suzymae (@suzy_mae) May 5, 2013
Tyler the Creator recently partnered with Mountain Dew with an ad featuring a lineup of black men,a white police officer urging a battered woman to point out the one who abused her: the abuser is a goat named Felicia.
The video was criticized as racist and sexist. I have news: the world is racist and sexist. Black men over-index in incarceration rates, and women are most frequently battered. Yet, advertising that satirized aspects of reality was pulled from the airwaves. What protesters didn't consider was that releasing, then yanking the spot was an effective strategy, and must have been planned.
Tyler the Creator owns Vine. His bizarre videos mirror the Mountain Dew spot. Satirical, random, and violent: the humor little boys crave and Mountain Dew's demographic. The type of kids who love to offend. Mountain Dew proved themselves to be bold enough to piss off your mom. They apologized, loudly via sponsored Tweet, to appease the inevitable protests, earning even more media and a wider audience than the spot alone could have reached using traditional targeting methods. DONE. This isn't even an apology:
Hey guys - made a big mistake we've removed the offensive video from all our channels. #fail— Mountain Dew® (@mtn_dew) May 1, 2013
Have you ever read 1984? Have you ever read Catch-22? These novels couldn't predict our fractured online content consumption, or social media interaction, but they did foresee the sanitizing of reality. The pieces of culture that reveal our destructive, misogynistic, outdated forms of social contact are barred from discussion. Our stories support a fake construct of fairness, while reality continues to exist, in all its cruel and unbalanced forms.