From clever anti-smoking campaigns to misinformation on the flu.
I’ve been doing a bit of research on public health-awareness advertising campaigns, and thought I’d share some highs and lows. First, the good: I came across this gallery of compelling, clever anti-smoking ads and installations:
Now, the not-so-good. Steven Heller’s article, The Art of the Flu Poster highlights sub-par anti-flu campaigns (some boring, some confusing) and states that advertisements needs to convey information about flu risks and prevention in a more compelling, useful manner:
Staid posters, routinely issued by health care organizations like the United Nations World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control, are devoid of imagination (and good typography). Posters produced by these agencies run the gamut from bland instruction guides on how to “wash your hands properly” to poor attempts at levity using cartoon representations of symptoms, in which fever, fatigue, headache and others come alive as silly little characters.
Lastly, some bulls*t. Today, a Peta advertisement was banned for implying that eating meat can cause swine flu. Peta claims the ad “was not intended to suggest eating meat caused swine flu, but rather highlight the role that livestock production played in the incubation, development and spreading of fatal infectious diseases” but the ASA ruled against the ad because it was “ambiguous.” I think Peta’s (wrong) message doesn’t leave all that much room for interpretation: