Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Stinky Fish apology from the Marine Stewardship Council

Remarkable. Stinky Fish is here yesterday, gone today. Thus the short life of an edgy conservation campaign. If you ever wonder why environmental groups are conservative and cautious, this Stinky mess shows you why.

The Stinky Fish video is now a "private" video on YouTube, and I can't find a live copy anywhere. I'll repost if I can find it. WWF has the following mea culpa posted on their Stinky Fish page, along with a link to some boring outakes.

Fish do have ears. Seems I've kicked up quite a stink during the last few days. Some folks out there have shared some good points. And since we all want the same thing at the end of the day - sustainable seafood for generations to come - hell, I'd be a single cell amoeba if I didn't listen. With my movie debut offline while I talk to my Agent about the sequel, why not enjoy some outakes from the original film

Meanwhile, the Marine Stewardship Council has issued the following apology and promise of action.

On Thursday January 17th WWF released a short online video titled Stinky Fish to try to raise awareness amongst younger, web-savvy audiences about the problems of overfishing and build support for responsibly-caught sustainable seafood.

The premise of this WWF campaign was that while the seafood industry and retailers have already made great strides towards embracing sustainability, consumers – particularly young consumers – do not know much about the solutions the industry is backing. The campaign sought to use humour, irreverence, and satire to appeal to the online audience and get across a very important message in an engaging way. This approach is typical of successful “viral marketing” campaigns that are fun and quirky enough to cut through the plethora of messages out there and get passed around amongst target audience e-communities.

The reaction to the video and the main character has been mixed but parts of the seafood industry have reacted quite negatively in opposition to the campaign and have specifically asked for MSC’s position on the video and the campaign. Our position is as follows:

· This is a WWF campaign, conceived, developed and owned by WWF
· MSC has not provided any financial support to the campaign
· MSC staff were consulted during production and did believe the video could be useful in raising awareness and support for sustainable fisheries amongst audiences not usually reached through traditional communications

· We did not, however, foresee the negative reaction that the video and the main character would engender with our partners and colleagues in the seafood industry
· We regret and apologize for any offence given by the campaign to all those partners and colleagues in the seafood industry who work extremely hard to ensure sustainable and legal fishing that results in high quality seafood products in the market

Today, and over the preceding 48 hours, the MSC has taken the following actions:

· We have withdrawn the use of the MSC logo and we have disassociated the MSC from the Stinky Fish campaign
· We have communicated these concerns to WWF and requested that they take immediate action to address them
· We have removed any reference to it from our website and communications
· We have alerted all MSC stakeholders to this position.



Pepijn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pepijn said...

That's a damn shame. A lot of effort that could have been used to promote good fisheries went down the drain and turned into bad publicity instead.

Is it this one? (I did not get to see the one you linked, this one I received by email and uploaded to youtube)

Mark Powell said...

The link from pepijn is outakes, not the original Stinky Fish video. Thanks for posting, let's keep looking for the original. It's longer and talks about the Marine Stewardship Council.

Pepijn said...

WWF also posted a cleaned up version of the video: http://youtube.com/watch?v=GK-N1a9JvKI

Are you sure it's not somewhere in your local browser cache btw?

Mark Powell said...

Thanks for searching! How would I find it on my browser cache?

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