A condom maker's ad agency thought it'd be a swell idea to scare men out of causing unwanted pregnancies by — wait for it — sending them Facebook friend requests from their unborn future offspring.
"Men like a lot of things. But there's something most of them wouldn't like very much," says the narrator in the Olla Condoms ad (above). The next sound you hear: a baby crying.
According to the video, the ad agency identified "some" young men, "created their sons' profile," and sent Facebook friend requests to each of them. The request was from a baby who bore the recipient's very same name — followed by "Jr." A note in the request basically identified it as an ad for the condoms.
But the all-too-clever "Unexpected Babies" social media ad campaign by Brazil's Age Isobar agency appears to be misfiring, so to speak. Even if the requests were sent to just a handful of men, in order to prove the concept, the fallout from the strategy is global.
"No brand shall friend request me, without a lifetime hatred called upon them," hissed "ThomasBigum" on the YouTube page where the video of of the ad is posted.
"Wow, you have officially brought social media advertising down to a whole new low," noted LadyAnne525.
"The behavior is definitely spamming ... but I guess it's more creative than most spam," posted CaeserOct1.
Creative it is. And creating fake profiles for virtual babies of the future sounds like a violation of Facebook's policy.
"Facebook has always been based on a real-name culture ... we believe this leads to greater accountability and a safer and more trusted environment for the people who use our service," said a spokesperson for the social networking site.
"It's a violation of our policies to use a fake name or operate under a false identity, and we encourage people to report anyone they think is doing this."
One way is to go to Facebook's Help Center page on "Report Abuse or Policy Violations."
But the social networking site also has a "dedicated team that reviews these reports and takes action as necessary," the spokesperson said. " We also have technical systems in place to flag and block potential fakes based on name and anomalous site activity."
Either way, it sounds like this ad agency's baby may be abandoned soon.
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