Saying “No More” to NFL’s contrived and tone-deaf campaign against domestic violence.
January 19, 2015
What do you think of the NFL’s “No More” campaign against domestic violence? If you watch football on TV, the commercials are ubiquitous. NFL players look directly into camera and tell us, in so many different ways, “no more making excuses” when it comes to ignoring domestic violence. In other commercials non-players struggle to “start a conversation.” Men get choked up. Women cry. This stuff is sooooo hard to talk about.
The NFL created the “No More” campaign in response to the withering criticism it experienced for insufficiently penalizing star player, Ray Rice (two games) after a tape came out depicting him knocking out his fiancé in an elevator and then callously dragging her away. The NFL claimed it had never seen the tape, almost certainly a lie. The story blew up all over the world. If that wasn’t bad enough, another star player, Adrian Peterson, was busted for beating the crap out of his very young son with a stick. Peterson, in a pathetic story, claimed it was not abuse because ‘getting beat’ was how he was brought up. The NFL brand and its chief steward, Roger Goodell, took a well-deserved pounding for their indecisive and late reaction, which continues to this day.
Well, I’m also calling bullshit on their campaign. I say “no more” to these annoying and forced commercials. And so are a number of my friends on facebook, many well-known advertising professionals. I’ll let their comments speak for themselves.
These (commercials) are going to do absolutely nothing to help the issue. First of all they’re a complete lie and second they don’t confront, raise awareness, make a point…etc. Nothing. They’re an NFL whitewash…The NFL stonewalled the conversation and now they have the balls to say, “let’s start a conversation.” Unbelievably bad form. -David Baldwin
DO something authentically remarkable and different, and you won’t have to make shitty ads about a significant issue. -Jonathan Hoffman
I HATE them. Why? It’s built on the idea that this really happened behind the scenes. Contrived BS. It’s a lie. -Brian Brooker
Drama soufflé with drama sprinkles. -Katherine Green
Another friend commented the commercials were better than doing nothing. Barely. In my opinion, the NFL is mostly advertising its profound tone-deafness. The ‘crying women’ commercials are painful to watch NOT for the intended reason (the difficult subject matter) but on account of how cloying they are.
We all know these ‘characters’ are not spontaneously crying. To portray them as behind the scenes and breaking down is clumsy at best, at worst callous and insincere. In the spots featuring real athletes, the men look like meatheads reading cue cards. I don’t believe a word. With the “No More” campaign, the NFL players and the brand come off as bulls in a china shop.
Like a lot of people in this country I love watching pro football. I grew up with the NFL. I also create advertising for a living and have done so for a very long time. Finally, and most importantly, I have a wife and three daughters. Save for the abused themselves, I don’t think there can be a more qualified person than me when it comes to calling bullshit on this campaign.