Tuesday, December 02, 2008
6208: Hold The Pickle, Hold The Sensitivity.
From The New York Daily News…
Using poor villagers in Burger King TV spot is outrageous, critics say
By Matt Townsend and Stephanie Gaskell
Daily News Writers
It’s a taste test of global proportions, but many critics think Burger King’s new ad campaign is just bad taste.
The burger chain has launched a new, documentary-style ad campaign in which remote villagers in poor nations such as Thailand, Romania and Greenland pick between the twin titans of American fast food, the Whopper and the Big Mac. The name of the campaign: “Whopper Virgins.”
“If you want a real opinion about a burger, ask someone who doesn’t even have a word for burger,” boasts the campaign’s Web site, whoppervirgins.com.
Burger King declined repeated requests for comment Monday. Critics had plenty to say, though.
“It’s outrageous,” said Sharon Akabas of the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia University. “What’s next? Are we going to start taking guns out to some of these remote places and ask them which one they like better?”
“It’s insulting,” she said, adding that the money used to make the documentary would have been better spent trying to end hunger — not create it.
Marilyn Borchardt, development director for Food First, called the campaign insensitive. “The ad’s not even acknowledging that there’s even hunger in any of these places,” she said.
At a Burger King in Times Square, New Yorkers had mixed opinions.
“That’s a stupid commercial, because when you’re hungry, anything tastes good,” said Irvin Gatone, 42, of the Bronx.
Jacqueline Renee, 35, of Manhattan, said it’s a good idea.
“Not everyone is as fortunate as us to be able to pull up and get a burger,” she said.