Saturday, October 3, 2020

Why is this Facebook voting ad so spooky?

A few nights ago I was watching TV when this jarring commercial aired:

The point is to encourage Facebook users to learn about the 2020 voting process.  But the ad makes voting seem like it's some ominous endeavor.  Here are some highlights: 

0:00:  Spooky piano music plays.  An old woman stares out the window.  A girl in a darkened room gets ready to blow out her birthday candles, possibly for the last time.  A despondent man sits in the woods.  A mailman has a concerned look on his face while holding an envelope.  Some dude in a bathroom is stunned while reading a Facebook update about a dog.

0:17: A beleaguered mother of two tries to type something into her phone, and fails.

0:27: Close-up shot of a tongue.  

0:33:  The spooky piano music plays again.  The elderly woman asks her friend, "You'll be safe, right?"  (This is the LAST thing you'd ever want to ask someone in a horror movie.)  Two women in masks douse a voting area with spray and goo.  

0:49:  The ghostly sound of a child's laughter is heard.  

0:52:  A guy goes "Whoo!" in the voting booth.  (This isn't  scary, but the guy seems obnoxious.  I think he's wearing a fedora.)

0:56:  A plug for the website:  This is the thing being advertised, believe it or not.  

With all that said, the actual FB website seems useful, and I was able to check my registration status in about 45 seconds.  However, I would have never thought to visit the website if I weren't poring over this spooky ad in preparation for writing a blog post.  The whole presentation reminded me of that infamous ad for the electric car.  You know, the one which made it seem like anyone who bought an electric car was doomed:

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