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Knock Off Nigel….Reprise 

By Finton “Home Taping Is Killing Music” Stack 


You all know the ad. The worst, most unequivocally turgid piece of shit ever conceived over a beaked up lunch session of the ad men’s equivalent of the Groucho Club is darkening our screens for a second run. Perhaps the original wasn’t ridiculed quite enough the first time round? Personally, I'm at a loss with absolutely everything to do with this ad. From how it got a second run to which twat with red glasses & braces deemed “Nigel” a moniker readily associated with organized crime all the way through to who this abortion of a campaign is actually aimed at.

Most puzzling of all, who in their right mind sat down, saw the proposal, thought "Simon Bates didn't work but I'm convinced this will make the nation re-examine their whole attitude towards copyright theft" then went ahead & commissioned the thing anyway?

Has there ever been an advert that's failed on so many different levels?

An acquaintance of mine who works in advertising informs me the campaign is from the COI (Central office of Information - Govt bodies marketing dept) & the Industry Trust for IP Awareness. ( Intellectual Property ) and is funded by a number of media owners as well as retailers such as HMV, ebay. It is designed not just to cover music / DVD but fake goods of any description. The jist of the brief the creative agency worked to was that copyright theft is socially unacceptable. They wanted to prick the conscience of those who may be indulging & introduce an element of peer group ridicule. He also reckons it won’t make a blind bit of difference & is, on the whole, a bit bemused by it.


He’s not the only one bemused. I’m of the age where I can just about remember the govt doing some great ads, usually involving kids, water & the grim reaper. Or Rolf Harris. Every time I see this one, I’m left scratching my head in disbelief. Not only by the people behind it who are so obviously that out of touch with “popular” culture that they failed to notice Del Boy’s wheeling & dealing making him one of the best loved comedy characters of all time but also the audacity of the record companies etc funding it who’d be more respected if they just had a 30 second scrolling message reading along the lines of “look, we know we’ve done you in the arse for the past 50 years price wise but we’d really like you to stop doing this as we’ve shareholders to satisfy”. At least the previous “home taping is killing music” & “sampling is killing music” scare stories drummed up by the industry bothered to cloak the issue with a smattering of moral fibre. I accept it’s a tough brief for any agency to try to work with. I appreciate that issue wise, you can’t polish a turd. But with this turd, they appear to have sandpapered it down, smeared it in fresh shit then hurled it into a field of cowpats.

I’m also struggling to see whose conscience they’re pricking. The person who picks up his “Finding Nemo” DVD for £3 at a car boot ( complete with “Piracy is theft” trailer )? The person paying £40 a month for a high speed broadband connection, ridiculing the “Nigel is a cheapskate” line they push, or the likes of me who single handedly kept the likes of Freddie Mercury in the kind of high quality cocaine & underage rent boys he’d become accustomed to for 25 + years & is finally getting a bit back. You know the daft thing? A small part of me didn’t actually mind funding “proper” pop stars. But if you think I’m paying for lightweights like Winehouse & Doherty to inject smack into each other’s eyeballs, you’ve another think coming!! As for the peer group ridicule bit, well. See my lines above re out of touch etc etc.

You know the bit that really upsets me? Simon Bates & the rest of the industry have been lying to me the past few years. They told me that music & film piracy was done wholly & exclusively by Triads purely to fund terrorism & the killing of babies. Now I find out it’s a chap called Nigel. How many Chinese people do you know called Nigel? I rest my case.







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