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Levi’s “Go Forth” ad goes viral, but angers some conservatives September 28, 2011

Posted by rmshepard in Uncategorized.
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A new advertisement for Levi’s went viral in September 2011, encouraging consumers to “Go Forth.” Showing many 20-somethings relaxing, and many others protesting in the streets, the ad clearly appeals to young adults looking for a rebellious and youthful image. The ad ran into trouble when mass rioting began in London, and was pulled from the UK market.

In the United States, though, some conservatives also stepped up to reject the ad, claiming that it glorifies violence. Glenn Beck, a longtime fan of Levi’s, took to his radio show to argue that Levi’s was promoting progressivism and glorifying revolution. After comparing the ad to the scenes all over the Middle East and Africa, Beck promised:

I can’t believe I’m saying this. I love Levi’s. Never again, Levi’s, never again will you get a dime from me. I know you’re not disappointed. Never again. I won’t wear your stupid red tab. The quintessential American piece of clothing doing this. Just for what? Because you just want to sell, because you want the controversy? I don’t think so. You believe it. You say you want your jeans to be the uniform of progress.”

To see the ad yourself, watch the following video:

Discussion Questions:

1.  Why did the Levi’s ad become so popular that it nearly topped the viral video charts?

2.  Was the Levi’s ad offensive? Was it in poor taste in light of the UK riots? Was it in poor taste in light of the pro-democracy protests across the globe?

3.  Should Levi’s respond to Glenn Beck’s criticism? Why, or why not? If so, what should they say?

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