Welcome to Norway! Land of Chlamydia!
The Norway tourist board is unhappy with 7-11’s latest ad campaign. While their American counterparts were removing Deadpool stickers that had plastered their glass surfaces in a cross-promotion with the recent movie, Norway’s convenience stores were focused on something slightly different than chimichangas.
They are promoting condoms to tourists.
This alone is not surprising. Condoms are a useful product, after all, and they can be advertised in most countries. 7-11 has chosen a very eye-catching way of selling their products, however. They’re using imagery designed to catch the attention of tourists.
Watch the ad while you can, because they’re being taken down. Whether that is at the behest of 7-11, under pressure from Norwegians; or at the behest of the Norwegian government is unknown. Both would be understandable.
It wasn’t just the online video ad, however. Posters have been placed at Norway’s main airport and train stations with the same message:
Norway has one of the highest rates of chlamydia in Europe. Visiting from abroad? Protect yourself against the locals!
The fact that a primary English-language news site is called The Local is somehow appropriate. From The Local:
“(This) makes Norwegians seem like uncouth, lewd, sex-mad people,” Visit Norway marketing developer Stein Ove Rolland told Dagbladet. “This is not a good advert for Norway, and as a depiction of Norway and Norwegians it is a disaster,” he added.
But Tore Holte Follestad, assistant manager with sexual health NGO Sex og samfunn (Sex and Society), praised the provocative ad. Follestad said that Norway’s own health authorities should run a similar campaign themselves.
Transmission of chlamydia can be prevented with proper condom use. 7-11 sells condoms. It seems like a natural combination. It is easy to see where some locals might take offense, however… particularly if they’re one of those who hasn’t had the disease.
7-Eleven ad describing #Norway ?? as “the land of the #fjords, the mountains, and chlamydia” and promoting using #condoms against locals goes viral. ? https://t.co/11DD6K4vxQ pic.twitter.com/6ATD4tgCQv
— The Nordic Page (@TheNordicPage) July 2, 2018
I also have to wonder if 7-11 Norway gave any thought as to what “slurpee” might become a new nickname for in the Scandinavian countries.
Question for the night: What’s an unexpected sight that greeted you on a vacation trip?