Sunday, 10 October 2010

Argos: The Choice Of The Professional, Apparently

In August, Liberal Vision commented on a BBC article which, in turn, unquestioningly regurgitated a load of nonsense produced by New Zealand's University of Otago, one of the world's most ridiculous anti-smoking institutions.

Here was Comrade Beeb's take on it.

The tobacco industry may be using websites such as YouTube to get around a ban on advertising cigarettes, a study says.

The authors analysed 163 clips, of which 20 appeared to be "very professionally made," they say.
Angela Harbutt at LV mirrored my thoughts at the time.

How disappointed must they have been? All that time slaving over a hot pc looking at shed loads of evil…. and their smoking gun (excuse the pun) is …….that 20 pro-smoking videos on YouTube look great?

Who is to say that these brilliant videos were NOT made by a number of motivated, gifted individuals, with a video camera and/or some editing equipment, sharing their passion with the wider world? Why is it that the quality/brilliance of the videos is taken to mean that they are bound to have been made by the tobacco giants or their ad agencies…. Have these people not checked out just how many brilliantly made, professional looking, videos are being put out there on YouTube these days?

I am thinking of emailing the authors of the research study [...] asking if they wouldn’t mind posting links to the 20 videos that looked “very professionally made” so that we cant put them up on LV.
Well, Angela, via an Observer article today, we have a better idea of what they are talking about.

Here is the example they give.

Err, and that's it. 'Very professionally made' with - as the uploader admits - "a digital camera, a mac and too much time on my hands."

Quite obviously, then, categorical proof of tobacco industry involvement for the terminally obsessed - and one must seriously start doubting their sanity soon - tobacco control movement.

Except that stop motion photography isn't new, or even that difficult. For crying out loud, I toured a secondary school this week where 12 year olds were exhibiting more advanced stuff than that clip! In fact, kids were making such films for Screen Test's annual 'Young Film-Makers' competition back in the 1970s, well before the advent of digital cameras and software affordable to just about everyone.

You'd think the BBC might have worked that one out considering they funded the fucking show, and aired the stop motion films. Made. By. Kids!

What's more, just a cursory glance at the other videos uploaded by this user shows that he is a Transformers fan, that's all. He also transforms matchboxes and Durex packets to the theme tune, as well as posting a clip of Transformers in Indonesian.

And ASH - funded by your taxes, remember - describe such an innocent video thus.

Amanda Sandford, research manager at anti-smoking group Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) said the study's findings were "disturbing but fairly typical of tobacco industry activity".
Amanda. Seek psychiatric help. No, really.

I wonder what the other 19 'professionally made' videos (that can't be revealed as the report is behind a paywall) were like. Something really advanced like using captions, perhaps? Or daring to employ fade and wipe on a £60 Argos Alba?

Good grief.

H/T The Grim Reaper


Benson & Hedges said...

Cheers Dick, the cheque is in the post.

Dick Puddlecote said...

Gah, busted!

I confess. I'm a van driver being paid by a multi-national corporation to sniff out the bleeding obvious.

You've outwitted me B&H, and no mistake.

PT Barnum said...

I think smoking is brilliant, cool, and the epitome of style and intellect.

I would like to be in the pay of Big Baccy.

Where can I apply? (Will accept payment in kind.)

(PS surgery now required for tongue-from-cheek removal. These people are just ludicrous.)

timbone said...

ooo I wonder if one of the several I made is on their list. Have you got Amanda's address Dick? Maybe I can get some extra commission from 'A Tobacco Imperil'

BTS said...

I'd have thought that, if people are going to make stuff out of rubbish and then film it, the blame would lie far more with Blue Peter (or perhaps the BBC in general..) than BAT.

As an example of the pernicious effect of that progamme, I was once asked, at the tobacco counter in a supermartket, what the pipe-cleaners I was purchasing were actually used for.


timbone said...

BTS how stupid can they get, everyone knows that pipe cleaners are used to get a swab from inside a male's gentitals at an STI clinic, oh, nearly forgot, and cleaning pipes.

BTS said...

I thought I recognized you from somewhere. You have warm hands, if my memory serves correctly..

BTS said...

Comment from the Observer:


10 October 2010 6:26PM

I'm from Australia but now I live and teach in Prague. In Australia smoking is down to less than 20% of the population. 17% if my memory is correct. It was achieved by making it utterly anti-social to smoke. It took over 20 years to achieve this, but now you hardly ever see people smoking in restaurants or pubs except in very isolated communities.

Here in Prague you still see people smoking in restaurants and pubs. Maybe we've got 20 years to go. There are very encouraging signs though. Prague's a fairly small town so I see my students a lot in the street and bump into them socially. I've never seen one of my students smoking. In contrast, when we have visits by Italian and Dutch students, they accumulate near the entrance to the school smoking. Again, it was achieved by making it seem stupid and anti-social for young people to smoke.

It IS possible to change social habits. Is it social engineering? Probably, but I think it is GOOD social engineering. Now if we could just get the British visitors to stop getting paralytic drunk as soon as they arrive in Prague we'd be on a winner. I'm not holding my breath.---

So, just to clarify, WKSPrague claims to have spent 20 years trying to make a reasonably sized proportion of his/her own country's citizens social outcasts.

Then, having got that proportion down to approximately 1/5 of the population who still admit to being socially undesirable (and therefore presumably making an already impressive country even better), he/she/it decides to fuck off to the other side of the planet to tell other people what they shouldn't be allowed to do in their own fucking country. Didn't the Aussies used to call us Imperialist bastards..?

As for 'GOOD social engineering' - did I miss a really important memo somewhere? Wtf?

And this person is a teacher of some description. Well, let's just hope that it's not of philosophy. Or politics. Or history. Or economics. Or..

We can be absolutely certain that it isn't English.

When did we start letting these people out..?

Woodsy42 said...

I have just read a post over at Readwald's blog lamenting the lack of engineering skills nowadays.
I am sure that what you have here is similar, not just biassed thinking but a genuine complete inability to do anything even vaguely pracical. Many of these London-centric quangoists cannot programme a computer, can't use a screwdriver, have no practical skills and have never been taught to think analytically. As a result they simply cannot imagine how an ordinary person can have such abilities and not have had professional help.

Woodsy42 said...

Oops, pre-coffee finger problems. should be Raedwald's blog!

The Grim Reaper said...

Thanks for the link to mine, Mr Puddlecote.

I agree with every single word in that piece. It's hilarious what lengths some of these Lefties will go to attack smokers and the smoking industry, isn't it?

Dick Puddlecote said...

Barnum & Timbone: If you find out how to get paid by BigTob, let me know. Maybe I could stop having to deal with VOSA and the fucking DVLA on a daily basis. :(

BTS: Your reaction to that comment was the same as mine. What did the Czechs do to deserve that flaccid lily-liver?

Woodsy: Good point, and quite feasible considering the sum of their existence is to take other people's money and produce absolutely nothing with it but hot air.

TGR: You're welcome, glad you spotted it.

Mark Wadsworth said...

That is a genius video. I've seen both films (and quite liked them) but Transformers made out of real fag packets takes it to a whole new level.

And the Decepticons could be made out of packets of Nicorette chewing gum or something.