Flesh Ads

I don’t personally have any tattoos, but I think they are very intriguing. I follow very talented tattoo artists on Instagram, I watch basically any show about tattoos that’s on TV or Netflix, and I love looking at people’s art (this one guy at my work gave me a very confused look when I was staring at his arms and slowly eating macaroni and cheese enhanced-buzz-wide-11196-1347572108-2for a long time…). When I came across the article “Woman Gets a Giant Tattoo, and Her Very Own Ad to Go With It,” on AdWeek.com, my first thought was she’s an idiot. Images of that guy who has different porn websites and random companies tattooed all over his face and body came pouring into my head. It interests me though, that Reebok is tattooing their logo on people’s bodies, while all other accounts of human advertisements I’ve ever read about, such Joe Tamargo, the dude with porn sites on his forehead, feature unrecognizable and sketchy companies.

The tattoos that the nine people got through Reebok are supposed to represent their commitment to fitness and dedication to the fit lifestyle. The tattoo itself is a disconnected triangle. The woman that got the largest Reebok tattooed was a woman who competed at Tough Viking competition in Stockholm, named Camilla Nilsson, and she states in the commercial, “Why not?” in regards to why she got the tattoo. In addition to receiving the large tattoo on the back of her right thigh, she received a “one-year sponsorship” worth $5,800 in Rebook gear.

reebok-forever-camilla-hed-2014            My main question: is this ethical advertising? Is this mode of advertising morally flawed? “Hey, we’ll give you free shit for a year if you get this giant-ass tattoo on your body for the REST OF YOUR LIFE!” *cue the evil witch cackle*

It’s interesting to think about tattoos in the form of advertisements. For example, one of my best friends recently got the Bassnectar (a DJ) logo tattooed on her finger. I’ve seen people with Bassnectar tattoos before, and hell, I’ve even thought about getting the logo tattooed too, but my friend got Bassnectar’s logo tattooed on her index finger, which is nearly impossible to hide unless you’re wearing gloves or have a huge ring, and now, in a way, is a human advertisement for Bassnectar, except for the fact that she is not paid for having it, and isn’t getting anything free for the rest of the year.

What do you all of you think about using human flesh as a mode for advertisement?

What if it’s something people are truly passionate about, such as fitness and Reebok, or a specific band or musician?

What do you all think about the guy with porn websites tattooed across his forearms and forehead?

What are the moral and ethical differences between the different tattoo ads?



4 thoughts on “Flesh Ads

  1. This post reminds me of the logo of Thirty Seconds to Mars, a simple triangular shaped logo with a horizontal line in the center. I was a fan of them and I too, wanted a tattoo of their logo, well, when I was a teenager. I think it’s not entirely about advertising but I think of it as a symbol of identity especially when you were in the awkward adolescent phase when you were struggling to find an identity and wanted to be “cool” so you wanted something that looks cool on you too. And that triangle logo did look cool to me and it would tell people what sort of music I listened to and it could imply my personality. Thank god I didn’t have that tattoo of i’ll be regretting.


  2. I think that this is just an example of how crazy some people are. Some people will do anything if you give them the chance. I have no idea what motivates this guy to do what he did. However, for the companies tatted on his face, it is good for them, because people will definitely be staring.


  3. Didn’t Reebok have a different logo before? I feel like changing it now is just confusing. When most people see her triangle tattoo would they even know its Reebok’s logo? I know plenty of people with triangle tattoos and its not an advertisement for anything, maybe hipster-ism or something. I don’t think Reebok abused their power because at the end of the day, those 9 people got free tattoos that have strong sentimental value to them. It’s not like they have Reebok written across their thighs/faces. When the gear is gone and Reebok is no longer using her image as an advertisement, she’s still going to see that tattoo every day and remember that fitness is a priority in her life and not an athletic company. With that said I don’t really think the campaign is that powerful of a message. Because as you can see with this blog post, most people are just questioning Reebok rather than admiring them/believing the ad.


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