Fried PR: "This Is Your Brain On Drugs" PSAPresentation Transcript
Fried PR: “This is Your Brain on Drugs” Public Service Announcement The Virtual Organization: Dana Lizik Carla Bradley Rose Pulido Amanda Anderson Victoria Ugalde
Motivation for the Campaign: Problem needing to be solved The 1970s brought a media inflicted drug scare to the United States. The Partnership for a Drug Free America was created in the 80s to advise the nation about drug use, The Fried Egg campaign was created in attempt to keep kids from doing drugs and to portray the former disbeliefs of the dangers of drug use.
The original Fried Egg PSA commercial http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3FtNm9CgA6U&feature=related
Partnership for a Drug Free America (PDFA) History Funding: People may be surprised to learn that the PDFA is an entirely privately funded mass-media campaign created by professional marketing personnel, with no other organizational base or purpose. It is financed entirely through donations from large corporations, advertising agencies, and private foundations.
PDFA History When it started: Started in 1986, the PDFA is the brainchild of Phil Joanou, then chairman of the Los Angeles advertising agency, Daley & Associates. Joanou introduced the idea of creating the PDFA at the 1986 annual meeting of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA). President Reagan and Mrs. Reagan launched a “War on Drugs.” President Reagan signed the Omnibus Anti-Drug Abuse Act in 1986, which has since become the vehicle for more than a 10-fold increase in federal funding for anti-drug efforts. Against this backdrop, Joanou asked the AAAA for a $300,000 grant of seed money to launch what was originally called the Media-Advertising Partnership for a Drug-Free America. Based on discussions with leading advertising agencies and campaign consultants, the PDFA was originally conceived as a temporary 3-year effort that would require $1.5 billion worth of advertising to achieve success in "unselling drugs" (Alter 1987; Colford 1988a). With money from the AAAA, the PDFA shortly thereafter set up its offices in New York City and hired its first Chief Executive Officer, Dick Reilly, and president, Tom Hedrick. Alter a series of minor delays (Alter 1987), the first PDFA ads were aired on April 13, 1987 (Associated Press 1992).
PDFA Mission Statement In their campaign literature the PDFA has identified three major objectives: 1. To reduce demand for drugs by changing attitudes through media communications, 2. To track changes in attitudes toward illegal drugs, and 3. To evaluate the impact of PDFA messages on attitude changes (PDFA 1992).
In a personal interview with PDFA President Tom Hedrick for this article, he stated that the most clearly defined objective for the PDFA is in management terms: to attain $1 million worth of advertising every day. They project that this level of advertising will ensure that every single American receives at least one anti-drug message every single day (Colford 1989b).
Success Rates During the first years of the campaign, its research team documented considerable difference in attitudinal and behavioral change among young people. Later results were less hopeful as a number of societal factors changed and media time and space became less readily available. http://www.museum.tv/eotvsection.php?entrycode=publicservic The research findings suggest that by 1990 - after three years of anti-drug television advertisements - drug use was reduced by approximately 9%. Additionally, the team observed that the decrease in drug consumption came at a time when anti-drug ads had increasing levels of national media exposure and public visibility. During this timeframe, pro bono media support for anti-drug advertising increased from a low of $115 million in 1987 to a high of $365 million in 1991. http://mba.yale.edu/news_events/CMS/Articles/804.shtml
Timeline 1970s- Mindset that drugs are not harmful and possibly even enlightening 1981- Disproval of occasional weed use among high school seniors was 52.6% 1986- Partnership for a Drug Free America created; President Regan and wife launched new War on Drugs; Media coverage of drugs moved to the front page (Newsweek 6-pg cover story on drugs); cocaine becomes more wide spread; basketball star Len Bias and football pro Don Rodgers both died from cocaine overdose; Regan signed Omnibus Anti-drug Act for federal increase in anti-drug campaigns; Disproval of occasional weed use among high school seniors rose to 69%;CBS aired "48 Hours on Crack Street," which became one of the most watched news documentaries 1987-orginal PDFA campaign created- “you’re using weed, you’re not using your brain”; flopped because the brain wave shown was of person in a coma not the 14-yr-old weed smoker it claimed to represent; Disproval of occasional weed use among high school seniors became 71.6%
1988 to 1991- Pharmaceuticals and their beneficiaries alone donated 54 percent of the $5.8 million the Partnership took from its top twenty-five contributors. That doesn't include the donations under $90,000, and the donations tobacco and alcohol companies, like the $150,000 each from Philip Morris, Anheuser-Busch and RJR Reynolds, plus $100,000 from American Brands (Jim Beam. Lucky Strike).
1992- last year for drug use decrease Disproval of occasional weed use among high school seniors was 79.9% and increased use ever since, 1995- Disproval of occasional weed use among high school seniors dropped to 57% 1998- A renewed federal interest in the War on Drugs under General Barry McCaffrey, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). ONDCP directed an effort where the PDFA would receive $195 million in federal dollars and for the first time in its history pay to place advertising. 2000- CNN Student Bureau openly criticizes fried egg for being too fictional. 2001- PDFA runs ad about heroin where actress demolishes a kitchen (the remake of fried egg); unsuccessful and unethical.
Key Publics The Partnership for a Drug Free America (PDFA) They put the PSA into circulation after a rise in cocaine use. The egg company Commercials with fried egg led impressionable children to believe eggs were bad The audience Teenagers and young athletes being targeted by drug dealers. The parents Shown the truth about drugs and how to talk to their kids about staying away from them. The dealers They became public enemy number one, although I’m not sure who really cares.
Key Publics: the breakdown Primary Publics (Directly Affected): The Partnership for a Drug Free America for using this PSA as well as others to give the public the facts about the rise in drug use. The audience who viewed the PSA when it aired in the 1980’s. The egg company who felt people would associate eggs in a negative way after viewing the PSA . Secondary Publics (Indirectly Affected): Parents who weren’t ready to discuss drugs with their children. The drug cartels that expect their dealers to “make the sale.” The slave labor that are forced to work for the cartels.
Ethics There were more ethical issues than legal issues when it came to the “fried egg” PSA. It was feared that children exposed to the PSA were more prone to associate drugs with eggs. Although the PSA was intended to be a powerful metaphor for what drugs could do to the human brain, it has been observed that children refused to eat eggs after viewing it. One can ask if it was the right choice to expose the PSA to children because of how perceptual they are to images. In the 80’s, an American association of egg producers brought up serious concerns with the ‘fried egg’ PSA. They feared that the ad was forcing the public to make a connection between “drugs” and “eggs” therefore possibly affecting sales directly. However, egg companies never brought their concerns to a court of law. The PSA was the not completely the ultimate factor to the 70’s ‘drug scare’ prevalent in America. Rather, the media was the main factor for the scare. It seems that the more larger the number researchers put on the problem, the more serious the problem appeared to be thus causing more concern and spreading moral panic. The use of disturbing accounts helped to play with the public mind.
Ethics Cont. A second factor that contributed to the awareness of a drug problem were legislation that was being passed. Ronald Reagan’s nationwide crusade against drugs and the 1.7 billion dollars passed to fight the drug problem epidemic all over the U.S. After 1992, drug use gradually increased. One can guess that the reason for the increase was because the federal government backed off the so called “war on drugs”. In 1998, Barry McCaffrey, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) brought the issue back into the limelight. The ONDCP directed an effort whereby the PDFA would raise !195 million in federal dollars and would for the first time in its history, pay to place advertising. (Jiffy Notes) Critics raised questions about the tactics and effectiveness of PDFA advertising, but few would argue that the group’s [“fried egg”] ads were among the most memorable of the late 20th century. (Jiffy Notes)
Human Factors The Partnership ignores cigarettes, alcohol and pills. Partnership tend to be melodramatic. They are based on scare and stereo-types. The "drug-free" crusade is actually a silent partner to the pharmaceutical drug industry, condoling the use of "good" drugs by targeting only the "bad" ones. More than 100 agencies have made Partnership ads pro bono, and the media kick in ad space and air time for free. This makes stations look feel like they are “giving back.”
Human Factors Cont. Fact checking is a sensitive issue for the Partnership since they've been caught with many inaccuracies. The review process has been overhauled and the factual content of all ads is scrutinized before they're produced. No one can prove that the ads are directly responsible for declining drug use or that drug use is down. Many television spoofs were created of the fried egg PSA on late night shows including Saturday Night Live which really decreased the effectiveness of the commercial since it was being laughed at.
Public Relations Factors The campaign was criticized because it was exaggerated and extorted. It was also criticized because of relied on "scare tactics" to getpeople's attention. In response to the campaign, the PDFA used ads with more encouragingmessages and made some changes to it later. The PDFA has said that while most companies use advertising to "sell"their products, they use advertising to "unsell" drugs. PDFA were also criticized for accepting 5.4 million dollars incontributions from legal drug manufacturers while producing ads thatoverlook the dangers of tobacco, alcohol, and pills.
PR Factors Cont. The "Fried Egg" campaign is the most widely-shown television message of any created by the PDFA in its 20 year history. The campaign was introduced as a way of getting America to see that drugs were a growing problem The campaign put the PDFA in the public eye. The Egg Association had a problem with the campaign because they didn't want their product associated with the unhealthiness of drugs. They also didn't want young children to think eggs were bad.
Critique Overall, the Fried Egg campaign was not as successful as the PDFA would have liked. We think they could have changed some of their techniques to increase their success rate and that the PDFA’s ethics are questionable, causing them to lose credibility. For example, the business practices they partook in were often unethical, like taking money from tobacco companies. The PDFA also suffers from relying too heavily on scare tactics and poorly researched images to accurately portray the dangers of drug use. Another factor the agency should take into more consideration is their publics and their audience. Comparing drugs to a fried egg scares young children, but is laughable to teens or adults. The trick is finding a comparison to a serious, yet understandable symbol or image, like the direction the PDFA went in with their “Above the Influence” campaign.
The 2001 Remake Unfortunately the PDFA did not learn from their mistakes the first time. Despite the relative little success fried egg brought them, in 2001 the organization created a spin off the fried egg, having the frying pan in coast the common element to “unsell” heroin. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyXFN4ocN_o&NR=1