Thursday, June 14, 2007

Smoking Kills, and So Does Overhype

Rachel brought her wireless laptop, which I suspect will severely degrade the quality of our "vacation". As a side effect, I can post from Ben Gurion airport.

The windows in the duty free shops are filled with cigarette boxes. They used to say "Just what the doctor ordered". Then they said nothing. Then they said that nicotine is addictive. Then that they might be "hazardous to your health". Then that they cause various health problems.

Now the labels simply say "SMOKING KILLS" or "SMOKING HARMS YOU AND OTHERS AROUND YOU" in big fat letters that take up the entire side of the box.

What next? "Smoking will rip your arms off and beat you about the head and body"? They keep upping the bar, but there comes a point where the warnings just begin to sound ridiculous. I see a guy smoking. He wasn't killed. Does that mean the warning is false?

Eve had this same problem with the apple, as I recall.

Overhype will kill your message as surely as underhype.

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