Yep, I dislike this trend, too, for many of the same reasons. It’s definitely insincere and I don’t like the commodification of social issues in general. I actually can’t stand politics being mixed with products, even if the only level of politics something has is a kind of aggressive “feel goodism.” I would extend my dislike of prescriptive messages (e.g., celebrate your beauty now!) to virtually anything. For example, I hate art that says things like, “Live, laugh, love” or “Dance like no one is watching,” ad nauseam. I refuse to hang art that tells me what to do! Do you think because your message is “positive” that it’s still not giving me an order about how to act?

I want to hear about the qualities and virtues of your product or service, and why it might be beneficial. I don’t want to hear that you donated X billion dollars to a cause or that your employees foster-mothered 10,000 baby ducks while you were producing your sofas. What is the length of the sofa? The color? What is it made of and how is it made? How long do your sofas last? Can I get replacement cushions easily? Stop talking about family values, ducks, charity, your “beliefs,” etc. Stop making every commercial sound like a philosophical manifesto, “At Evergreen Toothpaste we believe that every child deserves good dental health.” Yeah, well who doesn’t?

Linguist, philosopher, lover of history, wordhound, 21 year New Yorker, searching for meaning in the universe

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