Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Now that makes more sense

I spotted a new campaign promoting responsible drinking among young people this week. It appeared in my local neighbourhood newspaper and it is new in more ways than one.

Rather than the usual approaches which either shame or blame the irresponsible, this one seeks to put a little common sense into the equation. I was attracted to it by virtue of the fact that it featured one of my Rugby League team’s stars, Billy Slater along with international basketballer Chris Anstey and netballer Sharelle McMahon. This is not a new thing, to use familiar sporting faces to catch a young uns’ attention, but the message in the ad was.

“We’re not saying don’t drink, just think” was the catch cry and it made me take notice. Not just because it was a sensible motto but for the fact that it had not been used before now. Instead of a campaign based around shock, fear or shame, here was a message telling those most at risk that having a drink is not a bad thing in itself but that doing it without using a bit of sense is a bit like jumping into a tank full of sharks using your ‘tackle’ as a lure. Maybe there’s an idea for the next phase of the campaign? Hmmm.

Anyway, it just struck me as sensible to accept that it makes little sense to assume that you can either stop kids going out to drink and that the shock tactic ads on TV don’t work because they don’t take into account the fact that teenagers generally consider themselves bullet proof. By saying to them; “look, we know you like a drink with your mates, no dramas, just use a bit of what God give ya and don’t be a dickhead”.

It’s so simple and sensible, it just might work!

Prof. Pilsner

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