A child protection group in America thinks that this is a good idea for an advertisement:


  1. It's effective as an advert because although I had no idea what it was promoting, it managed to engage me enough to click the link to the registration page, which explains the product. That is its job - to get people to that page.

    I make no comment about the product itself - I don't know enough about the US context, but a quarter of a million abductions in a population of 300m seems very high - but the advert has been constructed very carefully to be just on the edge of funny.

    It uses standard gun pron imagery and a soundtrack, but carefully casts the characters so that they are exceptionally recognizable, not archetypes but individuals such as you would see in any supermarket. The element of representation is in the background, of course, as there is a Hispanic, a Black, a Granny and a Soccer Mom.

    The advert takes a chance; gun imagery and the fondness for the legend of fighting women of the frontier is very dear to Americans. Being seen to parody or disrespect that legend could turn people away from the product and yet that's exactly who you need to recruit to the register: people who wish to do something and do not necessarily see it as exclusively the state's business to build child protection methods.

    The child protection groups who think this is a good advert are correct; it is a very good advert if it enrols the moms they want.

    Whether it's a good idea is a separate matter.


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