Daily Archives: February 13, 2014

Misuse of Popular Culture or Wow Really?!

Poster for Big Brothers Big Sisters looking for volunteers

Poster for Big Brothers Big Sisters looking for volunteers

David showed me an interesting ad today and it got me thinking about how businesses will try and tap into something’s popularity even if they do not actually understand the underlying meaning of the media. In this specific ad Big Brothers / Big Sisters is using Katniss Everdeen to say that you should volunteer to be a big brother or big sister. They even used the scene where Katniss says “I volunteer!” as the image. It seems obvious that they understand that The Hunger Games is a hugely popular franchise and that there is a sisterly dynamic, but are completely missing the point.

I have not necessarily seen this sort of thing happen too many times, but I can understand why it happens. Why not use an already popular franchise to draw people in to your business or non-profit? It taps in to a market that already exists so that you can build off of an existing fan base instead of having to build from scratch. When you do not use the media appropriately it can come off as insulting and lazy. Continue reading