Register for an account

X

Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.

X

Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.

Environment

Climate Change Activists' Head-Exploding Ad May Have Gone a Bit Far

DiscoblogBy Jennifer WelshOctober 5, 2010 10:40 PM

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Warning: Some viewers might find the video below disturbing and graphic. In a move that some are calling a misguided publicity stunt, the environmental activist group 10:10 Climate Change Campaign produced and released a gory and disturbing short film, similar to Plane Stupid's "Polar Bear" video (warning: also gory), to promote the climate change action day scheduled for October 10, 2010 (or 10/10/10). In the video above, people who don't pledge themselves to 10:10's cause (including school children and Gillian Anderson) are exploded into red, chunky goo with the press of a button. It was released last week and has resulted in a media backlash, including Sony's retraction of support of the cause. It even inspired a cartoon. Not only does the video offend and disgust, but the New York Times's Dot Earth Blog summarized another main problem with the video--the dark shadow the negative publicity has spread over the entirety of the climate change debate:

If the goal had been to convince people that environmental campaigners have lost their minds and to provide red meat (literally) to shock radio hosts and

pundits fighting curbs

on greenhouse gases, it worked like a charm. Of course the goal might have been buzz more than efficacy. Too often these days, that’s the online norm. They succeeded on that front. I, among many others, am forced to write about it. Congratulations.

The Guardian

(a supporter of 10:10's) says the ad campaign was a joke that the public just didn't get. In the original blog post about the video, they talked to 10:10 founder Franny Armstrong

:

But why take such a risk of upsetting or alienating people, I ask her: "Because we have got about four years to stabilize global emissions and we are not anywhere near doing that. All our lives are at threat and if that's not worth jumping up and down about, I don't know what is."

"We 'killed' five people to make No Pressure – a mere blip compared to the 300,000 real people who now die each year from climate change," she adds.

10:10 Climate Change Campaign is a project to inspire people to cut their carbon emissions by 10 percent in a year, by taking on home improvement projects or changing their lifestyle. The group issued an official apology on Monday (10/4), along with this statement to the Guardian

on Saturday (10/2) :

"With climate change becoming increasingly threatening, and decreasingly talked about in the media, we wanted to find a way to bring this critical issue back into the headlines while making people laugh," said Lizzie Gillet, 10:10 global campaign director. "We were therefore delighted when Richard Curtis agreed to write a short film for the 10:10 campaign. Many people found the resulting film extremely funny, but unfortunately some didn't and 10:10 would like to apologize to everybody who was offended by the film."

For more reactions to the film, visit the New York Times's Dot Earth blog

. Related Content: Discoblog: Brazilians Urged to Pee in the Shower to Conserve Water

Discoblog: We’re Beyond Product Placement: Here’s “Behavior Placement”

80beats: 2010’s Hot Summer Took a Toll on Arctic Ice, Walruses, and Coral

80beats: NOAA’s Conclusive Report: 2000s Were Hottest Decade on Record

80beats: Senators Cut Climate Change Rules and Renewables From Energy Bill

    2 Free Articles Left

    Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.

    Subscribe

    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

    Want unlimited access?

    Subscribe today and save 70%

    Subscribe

    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In