Fashion advertising sans gadgets: Could it be we’re in denial about our addiction to technology?
September 2, 2011
In the September issue of GQ there are hundreds of fashion ads featuring hip, trendy people and not one of them is interacting with a smart phone or PC. And yet, in the reality that’s all these people do. I was taken by this dichotomy between the idealized world and the real world.
If technology is so NOW then why isn’t it conceptually a part of these ads targeting the very people who most want to be hip, sexy and cool? I Tweeted the question and wasn’t surprised by how much interest it created. There’s something very telling going on here. But what exactly?
Here’s my theory. It’s simple but it’s also unsettling. Despite (or precisely because of) our addiction to smart phones and computing, we don’t want to see ourselves that way. At least not according to GQ. Nope. The magazine has page after page of young, beautiful people NOT interacting with technology. Instead they are rowing boats, camping, driving convertibles, kissing…In other words, doing all the things we aspired to do before we fell into our iPhones.
Walk down Chicago’s Magnificent Mile or NYC’s 5th Avenue and what do you see? Real versions of these same people tethered to ear buds, faces buried in their smart phones. Girls walking and texting is so rampant they should put up signs.
I’m no exception I spend so much time at my computer it has caused marital problems! Yet, the addiction didn’t phase me until I saw all those pages of people not on their computers. It was like an epiphany. We are not only addicted to our machines but we are in denial about it as well!