Zoo wants chimpanzee commercials pulled from the Super Bowl
posted at 4:15 pm on February 1, 2012 by Tina Korbe
Eh, what would the Super Bowl be without a little ad controversy? Allah has zeroed in on the Matthew-Broderick-channels-Ferris-Bueller CRV commercial, but that’s not the only attention-grabbing advertisement slated for coveted Super Bowl space. A commercial that features suit-and-tie-wearing chimpanzees has irked an assistant director of Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo. He wants that ad pulled:
Steven Ross, assistant director of the zoo’s Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes, says CareerBuilder.com’s commercial showing chimps outsmarting a human co-worker actually poses a risk to chimpanzees because people lose sight of the fact they’re an endangered species and become less likely to help save them.
Ross has made this pitch every year the company featured chimps in commercials but now he’s hoping a recent Duke University study supporting his argument might help turn public opinion against the commercials.
The Chicago-based company only says the chimps in the commercial were treated humanely. The company also says the ads are effective.
The company in question is CareerBuilder.com. You know these suit-clad chimps, as Career Builder has featured them in Super Bowl commercials before. One such ad — which ran in 2007 — prompted Zag Studios to upload the clip to YouTube with the comment, “If it wasn’t a classic rule of advertising before, it should be now: You can’t go wrong with monkeys in business attire.”
If anything, I should think Ross and the Lincoln Park Zoo would be grateful for the publicity this generates. Truth be told, I didn’t know chimpanzees are an endangered species until I read the little article I link above. Admittedly, it would have made me feel for the monkeys more if the zoo folks had been thanking Career Builder for their clever clips that remind people chimpanzees exist in the first place — but I’m sure the Lincoln Park Zoo PR department knows what it’s doing.
At any rate, I’ll be talking this fun topic and more on “The Willis Report” on Fox Business News today around 5:25 p.m. ET. Hope you can watch!