What do we think of this then? Yesterday everyone seemed to be reacting to these ads, either in their trousers or on the phone to the advertising watchdog who received a large number of complaints about the ads. Even the IRFU sent the food company which own Hunky Dorys a solicitor’s letter demanding the campaign be pulled because of a reference to the crisps as a “proud sponsor of Irish rugby”. The campaign has been branded depressing, base, sexist, tasteless and exploitative among other things; but I believe the aspect of this which intelligent people find most frustrating is the amount of publicity the campaign has gotten in it’s first 72 hours.
Raymond Coyle, chief executive of Largo Foods who are responsible for the ads doesn’t see the problem,“I don’t think the ads are at all sexist but if people do think that then I apologise to them,” he said (rubbing his hands together with glee at the attention the campaign is getting). “Everything is so serious and gloomy now and we want to inject a little bit of fun into things.”
Are the ads exploitative? Yes. Are men often exploited in ads too? Yes. Would I prefer if this type of advertising didn’t exist? Definitely. However, the most irritating aspect of this is the thousands and thousands of euro worth of free advertising the company have gotten because they chose to be offensive.