Controversial Skype ads attack Facebook and Twitter

10/04/2012

Internet telephony firm Skype has launched a controversial outdoor ad campaign suggesting some of the world’s biggest social networks are ‘degrading humanity’. The ads form part of a $12m marketing campaign encouraging users to switch from Facebook and Twitter to Skype as a more visceral communications medium. The ads ask: “Technology is changing the way people think and operate, but is it also degrading humanity?”

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Another slogan alludes to Facebook, urging the users to “Upgrade from a wall post to a first class conversation”. A further ad proclaims “140 Characters Doesn’t Equal Staying in Touch,” which mocks Twitter’s 140-character limit per tweet.

Skype was acquired last year by Microsoft for $8.5bn. Microsoft’s new 12-million dollar campaign was last this week in both countries.

The seven different ads, initiated in the UK and coming soon to the States, feature bold all-caps, each proclaiming that “It’s time for Skype.”

Skype also ridicules the one-sidedness and impersonality of emailing and texting, as opposed to a more direct connection between people talking or on video. The other five ads reflect this with: “When Did LOL Replace the Sound of Laughter,” “When Did It Become Okay to Text Mum Happy Birthday,” “Your One-Way Ticket Back to Humanity,” “Humans Were Made to Look Listen and Feel” and “No Delays on Human Conversation.”

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