Monday, December 13, 2010

What You MEAN to Say vs. What You ACTUALLY Say

Like most young Americans these days, I have an at least mild case of ADD, which makes me an epic channel flipper (& completely annoying to people who actually want to watch a show in its' entirety). As such, I don't watch a lot of commercials.

And then I watched a commercial the other day, and got a writing lesson, so I guess they're good for something other than making us want things we don't need except in a meaningless attempt to fill the gaping black hole created by American marketing that continually demands more THINGS. It was the family photo "cloud" commercial:

There is... so much wrong with this commercial. Yet the thing that irks me most about it is when the mother says: "Windows gives me the family nature never could."

Wait... WHAT?!

Seriously - who releases something like this around the holidays? Who greenlighted this commercial? Who WROTE THAT LINE?

It's horrible. It's Lois Griffin horrible.

To begin with, that woman has no place to criticize anyone when she's making her family wear those horrible matching plaid shirts. *shudder*

Second, as I've already mentioned, young America is known (and always has been) for the "fidget factor." We're impatient, and the "get it now" imperative that culture has been shoving down people's throats is only making it worse. So how can you reasonably expect your kids to remain perfectly positioned for numerous photos if you don't tranquilize them first?

Obviously, someone's parenting skills are nonexistent.

Now, I know that the holidays are hectic & crazy and that people get overwhelmed sometimes. But there's no sense of that in this commercial. Her family continues to sit on the couch while she tells them they're not good enough.

I'm going to assume that this impression is not what Windows meant to get across.

Because while the holidays are hectic & crazy, that's one of the things that makes them so fun & wonderful. You put effort into them to show the people you care about how much they mean to you - not so you can force them to wear hideous clothing & make them feel bad about themselves.

So while you're writing, keep in mind what your words are ACTUALLY saying.

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