• Jun 25th 2007 at 12:04PM
  • 20
Something tells me that Ford of America and Ford of India do not share any information or assistance when it comes to advertising and marketing strategies. With all of the thought that apparently goes into advertising, one might think that somebody would have realized that this new ad in India - featuring an SUV and polar bears - might upset a few people. For more commentary on why this ad might be a bit insensitive, click here.

I am not going to add any additional commentary on the ad itself, instead I am going to mention the fact that advertising departments are paid to consider all of the aspects of a possible ad. Did an entire division of people pass this ad through without considering that it may upset a few people? Did they care? Thoughts are, of course, welcome.

[Source: Orangehues, thanks Manu!]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      RL, that's correct. The tropical regions will be the first to be affected. Most of the developed world (which is largely responsible for climate change) is in the temperate region and therefore will be the last to be affected by rising sea levels.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I wanted to fix an error in the figures above (comment #11) where I estimated total carbon emissions caused by use of motor vehicles from 1900 to 2000 to be 2.93 trillion pounds of CO2.

      It should be much more than that since I used the million-miles-traveled figure for the wrong period (1990-2000 instead of 1900-2000). So here's another attempt:

      CO2 emissions (in pounds) 1900-2000

      (distance traveled in miles / mileage per gallon) gallons x pounds CO2 per gallon

      = (14940656000000/29.3) x 19.564
      = 9976074880000


      That's 5 BILLION TONS of CO2 emitted by Americans in 100 years of use of the automobiles. I should add that this is a conservative estimate.

      Source for figures on miles traveled in the U.S. last 100 years:
      • 8 Years Ago
      wow...that site you linked to is a joke...anybody else watch that pathetic polar bear kid video? talk about brain washing......I think they forgot to tell these kids a few things...polar bears are carnivores, and that their population has over doubled in the past 20 years. Humans are not cause the earth to warm, hell, Cows emmit more greenhouse gasses then all of our planes and cars combined!
      • 8 Years Ago
      "For the advertising firm to create such an ad would imply that the message resonates to some degree with the market. To me, it sounds like there is a bit of skepticism regarding climate change in the target market."

      Huh? how can you draw the conclusion in the second sentence from the first one?

      First of all, it's conventional wisdom that we don't know half the time when advertising works. So I don't agree that whatever is produced by the ad companies is always right.

      Second, you're implying that skepticism of climate change is the reason they approved this ad? Doesn't make sense. It was approved because of lack of awareness of the sensitivity of the issue. But as I said in my post, that's no excuse. They should have known better.
      • 8 Years Ago
      hahahah this "orangehues" stuff is funny. "They are mean, they HURT MY FEELINGS, those bad Ford people. Having your feelings hurt feels sooo bad after my testicles were removed"

      I especially liked their ad. Vicious animals presented as cuddly teddy bears. They should go themselves and cuddle up with a polar bear, then we would not have to listen to their hippie whining.

      On a more serious note, it seems AB Green is blatantly promoting their eco loonie friends even if it has nothing to do with cars. Why is that? Some hippie comments on a car commercial and it gets featured on a car blog???
      • 8 Years Ago
      Thank you Jeremy. Yes, I welcome others' opinions too and look forward to receiving it.

      (*turns on silent mode)
      • 8 Years Ago
      Ads are targeted towards the market they're intended for. My guess is that this isn't a big concern in India.

      The point of the ad is to show that the truck can handle any terrain -- snow, rock, whatever, hence the mountain of "X"-es behind it. As in 4 X 4.

      A look at the official site shows more of the same:


      This is so not a big deal. Yes, there are two polar bears in the picture. They're as pretend as the mound of Xes behind them. Mountains out of molehills...
      • 8 Years Ago
      I just updated my post about the ad and why it got the reaction from me that it did...

      Am I over blowing it?

      Some of you may think I'm fussing over something trivial. Maybe I overstated it in the heat of things, but there are a bunch of things here that pushed me over the edge...


      * SUVs represent everything that's wrong with the auto industry.
      * They are less safe than the regular cars and on top of that they give the illusion of greater safety.
      * SUVs are also less fuel efficient than regular cars which themselves are far less efficient to begin with.
      * They are much bigger than what's needed for city travel.

      U.S. Automakers

      * The U.S. auto companies are one of the biggest reasons we are in this mess today.
      * They've had a 100 years to look for alternatives.
      * They've had these alternative technologies for decades.
      * They conspired to destroy mass transit in the middle of last century.
      * They have a history of suppression of new technology.
      * In a more just world, they would be prosecuted in court. Maybe one day they would.

      Internal Combustion Engine

      * It's a disgrace that the predominant mode of personal travel in the 21st century is still the massively inefficient internal combustion engine.
      * At just around 20% mechanical engine efficiency, they are the most inefficient modes of transport.
      * At less than 1% of well-to-wheel efficiency they waste 99% energy which should be a criminal offense.
      * Yet they are sold to public as high-technology, a panacea.

      (I can substantiate each of the above statements if anyone wants me to, but I think there's nothing new here. All of this is quite well known. The problem is, we're so surrounded by mediocrity and inefficiency that we learn to ignore it.)

      So my contempt for the internal combustion engine, the U.S. automakers and SUVs, together with my concern for global warming combined to lead to an outburst when I saw that ad.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I am going to strongly disagree that the U.S. automakers are "the biggest reasons we are in this mess today." This is not even close to being true. Auto's are only a small part of the problem, and many of the largest auto companies are outside the U.S. American consumers buy the products of many countries, all of which hope to profit. Also, targeting American consumers or automakers is flawed, as many other countries have just as unspectacular records when it comes to purchasing habits.

      I don't mind people pointing a finger at SUV's. They also are not solely to blame for our problems, however, the majority of them are more a fashion statement than a necessity. Honestly, if used as originally intended, I have no problem with them whatsoever. There would be far fewer of them on the roads if that were the case.

      Anyway, I would caution anybody against pointing a finger so broadly, they leave themselves open to attack, especially when they are incorrect.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Jeremy, you're misquoting me. I didn't say "the biggest reason" as you put it. I said one of the biggest reasons, which they are.

      According to an estimate(1), in the 20th century the American population traveled 4,390,076 million miles in motor vehicles. Assuming all these vehicles were cars and all got average fuel economy same as that of new cars (29.3 MPG), they consumed 149831.95 million gallons of fossil fuels in this time. Assuming that all of it was gasoline, that translates to 2931312270000 pounds of CO2 emitted in the atmosphere.

      • 8 Years Ago
      Oh the irony. If I remember correctly, India's population will be among those most affected by rising sea levels. The increasing affluence and consumerism of 5% of the population screwing over the bottom 95%.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Thanks Jeremy for posting this.

      Alex, *I'm* their market and I don't like this ad. Something tells me I'm not the only one here.

      Arnie, it's in very bad taste. You can't argue with that.
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