Future Atheist Ad Campaigns November 14, 2008

Future Atheist Ad Campaigns

We’ve conquered billboards and buses.

What will atheists do next?

Scamp has some ideas:

There are more ads over at Scamp.

If you make any atheist ads of your own, please let me know!

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  • llewelly

    The third one is way to subtle. Most younger people are not immediately familiar with traditional correction marks, and will not recognize the marks fast enough to understand a message going by on a bus.

  • Daniel H.

    Question for number 1: Can we not live now even if there is something up there?

    Question for number 2: Did you read the last word of Gen 5:4 or are you being dishonest?

    Question for number 3: What makes something good besides your opinion?

    Are these the best there are?

  • Lynx

    I like the second one best because it gets to one of my favorite parts of the Bible. We are all directly descendant from Adam and Eve. So they have two sons…and then their sons take wives from a city…wait, a city??!! Full of other mud-people we are presumably descendant from? Did those people in the city also live in the garden of Eden?

    Maybe a little too much for a bus-side, but how about one that says in large letters “Are you a Non-Believer?” with the background showing the names of various gods in darker letters “Zeus, Mithra, Poseidon, Thor, Anubis etc.”

  • The same thing came to my mind when I saw #2, Daniel. And I think you’re right, the other two proposed ads leave those questions (which have very good answers) unanswered, and not in ways that’ll prompt people to do any soul searching or find out more.

    Here in America, I’d much rather see ads that send succinct messages about how atheists aren’t evil or combative. I’m not convinced these posters send such a message.

  • Shane

    Question for number 1: Can we not live now even if there is something up there?
    Yes, but time you spent trying to save your eternal soul is wasted so it is really a matter of degree.

    Question for number 2: Did you read the last word of Gen 5:4 or are you being dishonest?
    Genesis is a myth. Adam and Eve are not real not are they the origin of the human race regardless of how many children the Bible says they had. That is the point.

    Question for number 3: What makes something good besides your opinion?
    Good is what brings the greatest joy to conscious beings. Not in a hedonistic short sighted way, but in a universal sense. Simply put: good is whatever allows us to live well. If you can’t see how this excludes wanton rape, murder, theft, and antisocial behaviour then you haven’t though about it deeply enough.
    Is something good because God says it is? What about the genocide, looting, and taking of sex slaves in the Bible that is sanctioned by God? What about the killing of people for disrespecting their parents or gathering firewood? If God is the ultimate judge of good and evil why is his policy on law and judgment less socially progressive than “an eye for an eye” (in this case, a life for merely working on the sabbath)? I can tell you why: it was developed by a few thousand bronze age peasants to manage social problems the best way they knew how (hint: very poorly).

    Are these the best there are?
    Hardly, but these are just catchy ideas for ads that need to get through to people in a few seconds.

  • Shane

    “…messages about how atheists aren’t evil or combative.”

    Speak for yourself. Now excuse me while I don my evil-looking robes and prepare for combat.

  • “Question for number 2: Did you read the last word of Gen 5:4 or are you being dishonest?”

    The last word is “daughters” at least in the NIV.

    Well, still…was Cain’s wife his sister?

  • Maakuz

    The top one is awesome, the middle one funny, and I don´t get the last one… But I feel going commercial is definitely a boost to the Atheists out- campaign!

  • justin jm

    Poster number 2 reminds me of the South Park episode with the Underpants Gnomes:

    Step 1: Steal underpants
    Step 2: ?
    Step 3: Profit

  • [Adam | Eve] -> Cain | Abel

    [Cain | Eve] -> … (Cain used his laptop too much)

    [Abel | Adam] -> … “son, I think you’ve got the wrong parent”

    [Abel | Eve] -> The entire supporting cast of Genesis

  • Jen

    My mother once explained to me that, prior to Noah’s flood, incest was totally cool with God because there was no diseases due to inbreeding. Which still doesn’t explain how Noah’s family repopulated the earth, but logic has no place in an ancient book, apparently.

    I like the signs. I think the last one is my favorite, because it doesn’t even question if there is a god or if the Bible is correct- it just points out that God isn’t necessary for goodness. llewelly- my sister is in high school, and when I look over her papers she knows what all the traditional correction marks are. I am not sure that all high schoolers would know- but my sister does, and her high school is not fantastic.

  • Oh my dog I love this blog 😀

  • Chas

    All of these are pretty funny, but a successful campaign needs to focus on a clearly defined set objectives, not merely clever copy/text. No one is going to change a core attribute of themselves merely by reading a bus ad.

    We need to ask ourselves what do we want these ads to do for us. Two possible objectives come to mind:

    1. Awareness to other secular individuals that there are groups of like minded people that they might want to join.
    2. Acceptance by the greater community that a secular organization has a legitimate place in that community.

    To do that, a campaign needs to deliver to both audiences a positive message which does not alienate either.

    For these reasons I like the second line in the DC bus ads (“be good for goodness sake”) but not the first line (“why believe in a god”) as it is alienating. I also like the poster that NIU student group did.

    This will make it harder to come up with slogans. The slogans may not be as satisfyingly humorous to us, and they will be less likely to get on Fox News. However they will start to lay a much stronger, positive groundwork for things to come.

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