Modern Campaigns

previous CAMPAIGN 4 of 6 next

PETA Abreast of the issues

PETA - People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals – are the undisputed masters of the provocative campaign. Their I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur billboards had a series of celebrities and supermodels, such as Naomi Campbell and Eva Mendes, sporting nothing but their birthday suits. Eye-catching indeed, but it sparked quite a furore – people claimed the images were mere titillation, or even demeaning to women.

Shock tactics

But they’ve gone further than that: in 2003 they put on an exhibition called Holocaust on your Plate, which featured 60-square-foot panels with images of concentration camp inmates next to photographs of caged chickens, and the bodies of Holocaust victims next to a pile of pig carcasses. Shocking stuff, and PETA ended up apologising to the Jewish Anti-Defamation League.

PETA win prizes

Lots of their campaigns are highly effective: PETA have convinced McDonald’s to introduce animal-welfare improvements; got Polo Ralph Lauren to stop using fur; and forced KFC to stop lying about the way they treat chicken (KFC are still on the business end of a PETA campaign -

A thorny dilemma

So is it okay to shock a few people if the result is increased publicity and pressure on the organisations you are targeting, or is this the same ‘the ends justify the means' mentality that figures it's alright to test on a few animals as long as people benefit in the long run? The jury’s out.