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Condom Commercials Airing During Prime-Time TV

By: Venton D. Blandin
By: Venton D. Blandin

June 3, 2005

There's a new advertising campaign dealing with sex coming to a television near you, and its product seems to be breaking an unwritten rule.

The new ad is called "Making A Difference", and it promotes condoms made by Trojan. The unwritten rule: some think it breaks is airing during prime-time on mainstream broadcast networks.

It's estimated millions of people may be taking unnecessary health risks when it comes to sex each year. With those sobering statistics, it's reason enough for the makers of Trojan Brand Condoms' to start a new ad campaign.

It's called 'Make A Difference,' and its aim is to help to reduce the number of sexually transmitted diseases and of HIV/AIDS cases by creating urgency among sexually active men and women to practice safer sex. While the new advertising marks a first, with some broadcast networks agreeing to air the spots during prime-time, it seems to some as breaking an unwritten rule.

"I don't think it's appropriate. I don't approve of condom ads being targeted for our teens," said Lynne Norris, a parent of an Albemarle County 16-year-old.

While condom ads have run on network TV in the past, they have been relegated to late night viewing times. By airing during prime-time hours as well, the message of the ads will reach a much broader audience than in late night hours alone.

The tone of the advertising is informational, providing facts and figures in a responsible manner that effectively educates viewers about the potential consequences of unprotected sex.

"They have the right idea. They just don't have the right timing because they are targeting a specific audience. Prime-time may not be the right time to do that," said Alex Vaughan, an Albemarle County teenager.

The campaign is comprised of various executions, all with a poignant and sobering message in striking white type on a black background.

The website for Trojan condoms has the ads available for viewing online. They began airing this week.


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