The Dawn Chorus

Fresh Australian Feminism

Facebook “Subvertising” Tells You To Take Your Weight-Loss Ad And Shove It

Posted by Clem Bastow on July 17, 2008

This is fantastic! UK feminist site The F Word reports on a project started by blogger Teresa Valdez Klein, taking the odious weight-loss ads that regularly appear on Facebook and turning them into positive body image affirmations; the click-through takes you to a body love website.

Here’s what she said when she started running the ads in April:

If you click it, it takes you to the Love Your Body Day website. I’m going to run the ad through April 7. I’ve set the maximum daily budget to the minimum of $5.00. I targeted it to single women between 18 and 30. I pirated the image of the Reubenesque Barbie doll from the Body Shop’s campaign in the late 90’s. Today, the ad had 12 clicks and 6,590 impressions.

This was the first FB ad she ran:

Since then Klein has run further body-love ads on the social networking site, largely taking existing FB ads, nicking their images, and subverting them to create a positive body image message. Here’s an example with the original and her ‘remake’ side by side:

Inspiring, isn’t it? And as Klein says in conclusion:

If you like this idea, why not try it yourself. It’s relatively easy to set up an ad to run for a few days, you don’t need to spend more than $5.00 a day and you can reach thousands of people. If even a few people do this, we can reach a wider audience with the message that we’re all tired of seeing ads on Facebook that try to make us insecure about our bodies.

Hear, hear! After all, it’s $5 better spent than on Cosmopolitan or Cleo or a weight-loss shake!


2 Responses to “Facebook “Subvertising” Tells You To Take Your Weight-Loss Ad And Shove It”

  1. Hi Clem! Thanks so much for the link love and for spreading the word. I’d love to see your readers participate by placing their own spin on the ads.

    I’m hoping that we can use Facebook’s self-serve advertising to start a new kind of conversation about body image, gender, and whether or not targeted online advertising is really targeted or just stereotypical.

  2. Clem Bastow said

    Yes! I plan to make some up myself – god knows it’s money better spent than on frozen dinners or trashy magazines!

    I can’t tell you the number of times my heart sinks when I see hideous weight-loss/dating/’true love waits’ ads pop up in my sidebar.

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