Politics used to make nudity interesting

Narendra Modi BJP india advert

 

Indian model Meghna Patel has posed almost completely nude for some political adverts supporting Narendra Modi in the upcoming Indian elections.

The official Modi campaign, despite the images going immediately viral, have quickly distanced themselves from the stunt saying that they “are not in support of such vulgar displays”.

It seems Patel, the Indian equivalent of a daytime TV presenter has shamelessly tried to capitalise on the biggest election the world has ever seen (over  814 million citizens are eligible to vote) to raise her own public profile.

The Guardian newspaper put it brilliantly by saying “it’s a rare story of politics being used to make nudity interesting”.

Labour Supporters Oscar Selfie

Labour supporters oscar selfie

 

At the Oscar ceremonies 2014 Ellen DeGeneres made social media history by tweeting the most retweeted image of all time – that has since been dubbed #oscarselfie – overtaking the previous record holder Barack Obama.

Keen to capitalise on the social media storm around the image, the UK Labour Party have released the number of supporters they have on record with names corresponding to celebrities featured in the image.  The copy that accompanied the image on Twitter appealed for Labour sympathisers to join the party ranks and particularly encouraged anyone called Channing.

It’s a nice piece of content that shows that the Labour Party can have a little fun.  Most people don’t want to sign up to a worthy, earnest organisation that takes itself too seriously, so this sort of thing is the perfect antidote to such negative perceptions.

If only Benedict Cumberbatch had spent less time photobombing U2  and more time using his sharp elbows to get into DeGeneres snap I might have been able to feature in the rankings.

(thanks to @ciaranward for bringing to my attention)

 

Hamish Pringle on celebrities and politics

Hamish pringle celebrity sells

At around 1pm today the listeners to BBC Radio Ulster’s programme ‘Talkback’ were graced by the special guest appearance of Hamish Pringle.

Hamish Pringle is the former Director General of The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, an advertising legend, author of popular business book ‘Celebrity Sells’ and Father to the author of this humble blog.

Following David Bowie’s “Scotland, stay with us” comment on last night’s Brit Awards, Pringle was invited on to the show to discuss the influence of celebrities on the outcomes of elections, public policy and referendum polls.

When asked whether it will have any impact on Scottish voters, Pringle was sceptical, commenting: “Sir Alex Ferguson is a veteran and very public Labour Party supporter, but I am not sure Manchester United fans take any notice of that fact when they go to the polls”.

Pringle went on to highlight that some celebrity endorsements seem to have the opposite effect, citing “The Curse of Eddie Izzard”: Izzard has publicly endorsed Britain joining the Euro, Ken Livingstone against Boris Johnson, Gordon Brown in 2010 and the ‘Yes’ vote in the 2011 AV Referendum, all of which have failed miserably.

Pringle stated that there were two important ways in which celebrities can be used to the benefit of political causes:

  1. Fundraising; he pointed to the extraordinary funds raised by Oprah Winfrey for Barrack Obama.
  2. Amplifying a core idea; he referenced Sarah Silverman’s involvement in ‘The Great Schlep’ where she helped deliver an idea rather than being the idea herself.

Sounds very sensible indeed.  He must read this blog more than he lets on.

Hamish is currently Strategic Advisor to agency 23 Red and is on the Council of the Advertising Standards Authority http://www.asa.org.uk

Labour isn’t working – the history

labour isnt working historical context

 

Advertising industry trade magazine Campaign has today run a feature on the history of the most famous piece of political advertising in British history – Saatchi & Saatchi’s Labour Isn’t Working (1978) for the Conservative Party.

Included in the article are the following nuggets:

1. The poster was picked out from a selection of roughs by Gordon Reece, Thatcher’s election strategist.

2.  The people in the queue are not genuine unemployed people, but are in fact members of Hendon Young Conservatives.

3. Martin Walsh photographed the same people over and over again, rather than a single long line, due to the shortage of volunteers for the shoot.

Here’s a high res version of the original poster:

labour isnt working

If David Cameron made a Facebook movie

Last week Facebook marked their 10th birthday by unveiling a new feature called “Look Back” that creates personalised videos highlighting users’ top content over the years.

Social media sites have been awash with people sharing their videos and, as is the way with anything that gains popular traction online, a series of parodies have followed.  Today, the Labour Party released a “Look Back” video on behalf of David Cameron.

It’s well made and features all the policy u-turns, gaffs and ‘gates that one would expect.  Well played to the team who pulled it together, it’s a nice mix of serious issues and cringe-worthy embarrassing moments.

They’ve slightly missed the moment – these parodies now feel like last week’s news – so it’s unlikely to have the same impact as it might have done 5 or 6 days ago.  However, no doubt the rapid response team will have learnt something by going through the process and I’m sure turnaround and approval speeds will only improve from now until election day 2015.

 

Employing your cleaner illegally?

20140208-174524.jpg

UK politician Mark Harper MP today resigned his position as Immigration Minister after realising he had been employing a cleaner who has been working in the country illegally.

Political Scrapbook, a left wing blog, has jumped on the scandal and produced the above image which brilliantly pastiches the government’s anti-illegal immigrant advertising campaign from last year.

A fantastic piece of political parody and point scoring from @psbook.