Times they are a changing
Brexit & Trump
The world is going through some significant changes today, some for the better and some maybe not so much. The Brexit vote and the election of Donald Trump as president in the US are only two prominent examples of these changes. One of these changes that are more than welcome to many, is the impending death of political correctness.
In theory, PC speech is a way to reinforce politeness in society, but in real-world practice, it’s the equivalent of restraining a child in a straitjacket, then chaining them to the floor in the centre of a padded room without any furniture or electrical sockets, to keep them safe from harm. To state that a particular segment of people tend to act in a certain way when the facts and statistics show that 90% of that segment regularly performs in a said way isn’t offensive, it’s a fact. By the same token, If a 5-foot Caucasian man claims that they are a 7-foot Asian woman, they shouldn’t be patronised for their feelings – they should be referred to the closest mental health professional.
Perhaps one of the greatest victims of political correctness is our sense of humour. A generation ago we could joke around with each other without being offended, but for years now a simple ribbing has been construed as an offensive insult. It’s unbearable for those of us with a sense of humour.
Thankfully, the societal straitjacket of politically correct speech is being loosened and will likely be completely tossed into the trash bin soon. This trend is even playing out on social media with brands, and Wendy’s restaurant is a prime example. @Wendy’s has taken to roasting their followers (and others) on a regular basis, and rather than being ostracised they’re gaining fans. For example, when asked by one user where they could find the nearest McDonalds, they replied with a picture of a trash can (it’s much funnier when you see the tweet and reply). Another user tweeted to them that “your food is trash”. Their response didn’t even address the lack of grammatical acumen, just tweeting back “No, your opinion is, though”. Ouch.
Wendy’s isn’t the only brand that has decided that PC is for the birds, though, especially when users are attacking them for one reason or another. In most cases, however, the flippant replies remain in good taste and good fun. When a user tweeted at O2 that they should perform an act of oral sex in hell, for instance, they replied: “Maybe later, got tweets to send right now”. And an example of an unsolicited roast came when a user with the handle @HotPikachuSex tweeted “what I wouldn’t give for @sega to make a new Jet Grind game”, to which @SEGA replied, appropriately, “what I wouldn’t give to have not read your username.”
Not a licence to insult
Now, I’m certainly not suggesting that insulting your customers or potential customers to be your new strategy to gain your market share. But it does appear that most people do have a sense of humour and aren’t as easily offended as the media might lead us to believe. And a good laugh is never bad for business. Besides, those who are so easily offended are idiots anyway.