Our great México....once again someday...
The billboard and press campaign, created by advertising agency Teran\TBWA and now running in Mexico, is a colorful map depicting what the Americas might look like in an "Absolut" -- i.e., perfect -- world.
The U.S.-Mexico border lies where it was before the Mexican-American war of 1848 when California, as we now know it, was Mexican territory and known as Alta California.
Following the war, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo saw the Mexican territories of Alta California and Santa Fé de Nuevo México ceded to the United States to become modern-day California, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, Colorado and Arizona. (Texas actually split from Mexico several years earlier to form a breakaway republic, and was voluntarily (voluntary?????) annexed by the United States in 1846.)
The campaign taps into the national pride of Mexicans, according to Favio Ucedo, creative director of leading Latino advertising agency Grupo Gallegos in the U.S., which was not involved in the Absolut campaign.
Ucedo, who is from Argentina, said: “Mexicans talk about how the Americans stole their land, so this is their way of reclaiming it. It’s very relevant and the Mexicans will love the idea.”
But he said that were the campaign to run in the United States, it might fall flat.
“Many people aren’t going to understand it here. Americans in the East and the North or in the center of the county -- I don’t know if they know much about the history.
“Probably Americans in Texas and California understand perfectly and I don’t know how they’d take it.”
Meanwhile, the campaign has been circulating on the blogs and generating strong responses from people north of the border.
“I find this ad deeply offensive, and needlessly divisive. I will now make a point of drinking other brands. And 'vodka and tonic' is my drink,” said one visitor, called New Yorker, on MexicoReporter.com.
Reader Paul Green goes into a discussion on the blog Gateway Pundit of whether the U.S. territories ever belonged to Mexico in the first place, and the News12 Long island site invited people to boycott Absolut, with one user, called LivingSmall, writing: “If you drink Absolut vodka, you can voice your approval or disapproval of this advertising campaign with your purchases. I know I will be switching to Grey Goose or Stoli and will never have another bottle of Absolut in my house.
“Hey Absolut ... that's my form of social commentary.”
From Los Angeles Times:
From the Associated Press
6:58 PM PDT, April 5, 2008
MEXICO CITY -- The Absolut vodka company apologized Saturday for an ad campaign depicting the southwestern U.S. as part of Mexico amid angry calls for a boycott by U.S. consumers.
The campaign, which promotes ideal scenarios under the slogan "In an Absolut World"; showed a 1830s-era map when Mexico included California, Texas and other southwestern states. Mexico still resents losing that territory in the 1848 Mexican-American War and the fight for Texas independence.
At this point, we disagree, because, we say it was an invasion, not a "war"
But the ads, which ran only in Mexico and have since ended, came as the United States builds up its border security amid an emotional debate over illegal immigration from their southern neighbor.
More than a dozen calls to boycott Absolut were posted on michellemalkin.com, a Web site operated by conservative columnist Michelle Malkin. The ads sparked heated comment on a half-dozen other Internet sites and blogs.
"In no way was it meant to offend or disparage, nor does it advocate an altering of borders, nor does it lend support to any anti-American sentiment, nor does it reflect immigration issues," Absolut said in a statement left on its consumer inquiry phone line.
Some fringe U.S. groups also claim the land is rightfully part of Mexico, while extreme immigration foes argue parts of the U.S. already are being overtaken by Mexico.
"In an Absolut world", a company that produces vodka fires its entire marketing department in a desperate attempt to win back enraged North American customers after a disastrous ad campaign backfires.
A plan for comprehensive immigration reform designed to deal with an estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States -- the vast majority from Mexico -- collapsed last summer under the emotional weight of the debate.
Absolut said the ad was designed for a Mexican audience and intended to recall "a time which the population of Mexico might feel was more ideal"
"As a global company, we recognize that people in different parts of the world may lend different perspectives or interpret our ads in a different way than was intended in that market, and for that we apologize"
Vin & Sprit, Absolut's Sweden-based parent company, will be acquired by French spirit maker Pernod Ricard SA under a deal reached last week.