Crystal and Corina C. sent in this image of an ad for Snack Factory Pretzel Crisps that recently appeared around NYC (from The Gothamist):
The ads led to some local resistance among those who felt the tagline, while meant to refer to the size of the pretzels, also links to ideas about body size. Here’s a video of a man making some modifications to one of the ads (from Salon):
According to NYC the Blog,
Responding to the criticisms via Twitter, Pretzel Crisps insisted they are just “using the word ‘thin’ in a creative way to describe our product,” and people are “interpreting [the ads] in their own way.”
Later they made another statement:
We hope people noticed what isn’t in the ads: No extra thin, scantily clad female models; No mention of dieting programs, points, etc… Our website and facebook page are all about EATING. We talk about pairing our product in different ways for appetizers. We want people to eat.
Finally, Pretzel Crisps announced they’re taking down the ads.
What struck me was the importance of social media in this whole process. Sites such as NYC the Blog publicized the resistance, magnifying its effect (would the company have even known about the guy pasting images to their ad if he hadn’t gotten NYC the Blog to post his video of it?); Pretzel Thins responded via Twitter; and the ongoing publicity of the criticisms as well as complaints to the company (which are a lot easier to make as a response to a tweet than if you have to look up contact info and get in touch individually) eventually led the company to end the ad campaign.
For a different example of resistance, see Lisa’s recent post on an astroturf protest campaign.
UPDATE: Well. As commenter Rebecca pointed out, they replaced those ads with new ones that indicate they may not have quite gotten the point of the criticisms (via Jezebel):