Fancy a crisp?

May 7, 2004

The report by Peter Greenhouse of Bristol Royal Infirmary that youngsters in the country's poorest areas are using crisp packets as condoms provided food for thought.

It caused me to reflect on the meaning and interpretation of advertising.

Perhaps I understand a little better now than before, so allow me to share my new state of enlightenment.

I understand now that when a certain well-known football personality is seen on a frequently shown television commercial to be in a frantic and desperate search for a specific brand of crisps that it is really a condom that he is seeking, not a snack.

There is also a research question that arises from this discovery: was the Big Bang the reason for the demise of ready-salted crisps?

Stan Paliwoda
Professor of international marketing
Birmingham University

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