Tumblr has been one of my favorite social media sites (well, practically the only one I’m on) since its inception, although lately I’ve been tempted to kick it to the curb because 90% of its content is beginning to be offensive to me and because you can’t do an innocent image search without running into very risqué stuff. Since Tumblr was bought by Yahoo! a few years back, it’s only gotten worse, and so have the ads. Like this one:*
At first, I thought the object in the little speech-bubble heart was a wedding band, but then I lowered my mind to the gutter, looked more closely, actually read the text of the ad, and realized that the object is in fact a condom. I began to get angry, but I realized I was on Tumblr and this ad is probably the least of all the things on there I could get angry about.
The picture says, to put it simply, If you love me, use a condom or I will prove my love for you by using a condom. I could imagine how using a condom could be seen as a caring gesture because you’re looking out for a lover’s well-being, but it is upsetting that it has to be that way,** that the types of things condoms guard against are so prevalent, and that a condom is not 100% effective in doing its job.
To answer the question in the ad, yes, sex is risky. A condom can guard a certain part of one’s body and may even provide temporary peace of mind, but it cannot guard one’s heart. I know that a discussion about protecting emotions is not what the ad intends to start, but the heart above the two guys’ heads reminds the person viewing the ad that heavy emotions are involved. What I’m getting at is that the heart should be removed from the ad. Perhaps the two guys should each be holding onto the condom instead of each others’ hands, and maybe the speech bubble should be shaped normally, with actual words (that don’t pertain to love) inside it. To me, putting a condom inside of a heart is putting a Band-Aid over a stab wound.
*Yes, I realize that I’m perpetuating the ad by posting it here, but who the heck reads this stuff anyway? 🙂
**Well, it certainly doesn’t have to be that way, but that’s the subject of many other posts and PSAs that mostly end up preaching to the choir.