Why death shouldn't be trivialised
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To get the UK talking more about the topic of death, specifically the rising costs of funerals and the legal fees associated, the funeral comparison company Beyond launched a risky advertisement campaign which has been banned by Transport for London. Although numerous awareness-raising advertisements find success using shock tactics to get the public talking, with the now famous Toronto child safety seat campaign being a perfect example, the risk does not always pay off. Indeed, when funeral comparison company Beyond stripped away the reverence associated with funerals to launch a campaign which used humour to get people talking, many people weren't impressed. Whilst the shocking nature of the campaign was a deliberate choice which could be amusing to those who have not experienced a loss, it has been criticised as being insensitive to the recently bereaved, where a more sensitive approach should have been taken. It is clearly necessary to talk more about the rising costs of death, with the average U.K funeral costing £3,897 in 2017 and many families unable afford the burden, which comes at a time of great distress. However, although the campaign's proposed aim is entirely justified, its humorous execution lacked the sensitive touch which would have elevated relevant discussions further. Instead of talking about the real cost of death, we are left criticising a campaign which held the potential to be more significant, had it addressed the topic with more concern. For many, the advertisement has simply gone too far and overstepped the boundary between open discussion and offense for numerous reasons. Whilst Beyond intentionally wanted the campaign to have shock appeal, therefore paving the way for further discussions, it is imperative to recognise death is not a topic for humour and trivialisation.
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