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Monday, March 19, 2007

Stalin Big Boards to Discipline Donetskites

As the Dons of Donetsk file criminal charges against Lutsenko and take over banks and universities in Kyiv, the mortal denizens of Donetsk are having less fun. First, their utility bills tripled. Second, Generalissimo Stalin made a comeback — this time, in a slice-of-death advertising campaign launched by a local utility company slapped with mass non-payment.

According to company management, the use of Stalin as a visual image personality creates powerful associations with order and discipline. Not an unfounded claim in a city that had gone by the name of Stalino from 1924 to 1961. Of course, those creative people forgot to trace the blessings of “order and discipline” to Stalin’s experience in bank robbery and genocide.

Anyway, the message reads: “Comrades, this is not a movie. This is life. They who don't pay will be punished.”

Perhaps Angela Merkel should consider adopting these scaremongering practices to combat her country’s rampant unemployment. Don’t they have a mustached zombie of their own in Germany? So how about this: “Achtung! This is not a drill. They who don't work will be deported to Donetsk?”


Bonus tracks: Soviet Anthem (English version, 1949)


Anonymous said...

Actually the campaign is "brilliant" (in marketing terms)
1) it does NOT link the higher tariffs to the current govt (no pic of PM Yanukovych or Party of Regions) even though these are the people responsible
2) it states that the people who do not pay - will be reported on - and so hits hard at the oldest generation (pensioners)the ones who are not paying the higher rates
3) is in Russian so people can understand
4) does not indicate who purchased the ads (owners of the apartment complex)
5) and lastly Michael Levchenko does not have to translate it for his grandmother who complains that she cannot understand the news on 1+1 as she does not speak a word of Ukrainian

the following has a link for video footage

Taras said...

I agree with your analysis:)!

Stalin speaks a language the target audience understands. And since the elderly make up the top non-paying category due to being the hardest hit financially, the sales pitch is perfect.

Whether they are survivors, belongers or achievers, people who cling to Levchenko VALS may read quite a bit of romanticism into the ad. Would that be enough to inspire every upscale Stalinist to start paying his bills and taxes? Probably not. One thins is certain, though. If Uncle Joe were alive, he would be enraged by the tasteless piece of bourgeois pop art.

Make no mistake: The ad agency and its client would be punished. The rank and file would take logging assignments in Siberia. Management would be summarily executed. Now imagine what would happen if Stalin got a hold of that Forbes magazine:)))

Thanks for the link;) I do watch Channel 5, but I chronically overlook it on the net.

Anonymous said...

they took down the "billboardі" - media attention got results!

Taras said...

In the city that once bore his name, Uncle Joe loses to the fourth estate — that hideous creation of bourgeois democracy:)