• Home Home

Student shares image of mind-boggling display mounted in school hallway: 'Shouldn't this be illegal?'

"I wish I could say I was making this up."

"I wish I could say I was making this up."

Photo Credit: iStock

Ad creep is real, and it may have invaded a school near you.

That was the setting for a Philips razor commercial years ago, as detailed in the r/ABoringDystopia subreddit.

"Ads playing on repeat inside my school," the poster, from the Netherlands, wrote.

"I wish I could say I was making this up."
Photo Credit: Reddit

Of course, the mind-boggling display drew unanimous condemnation. Commenters brought up everything from European Union laws to the mental health impacts of ads on adolescents to the hirsuteness of students.

Another problem is that the product on display was made out of plastic. After its short lifespan, it likely ends up in a landfill, contributing microplastics to the environment.

In 2021, the Dutch exported more plastic per capita than anyone else in the world, and they were third behind the Japanese and Americans in sending plastic waste to the Global South, according to the Plastic Soup Foundation.

In this case, you can avoid such planned obsolescence with a metal razor.

But really, the problem lies with the culture of consumerism that runs unchecked everywhere, like a streaker without a security deterrent.

"I first noticed that we were past the tipping point a few years back when I went to the airport and saw ads laminated to the bottom of the individual bins in the security line," one Redditor wrote. "Yes it's an airport, basically a shitty strip mall with an oversized parking lot, but for some reason it really caught me off guard how much we were becoming exposed to 'impressions' even outside the phone or computer screen."

Another added: "Mine was in a plane. A very cramped plane with tvs on the back of each chair. The tv had no off button. It played ads and nothing else UNLESS you swiped a credit card which was attached to the TV. I wish I could say I was making this up. The TV could only be 'shut off' by turning the brightness down. It was nightmarishly dystopian."

A couple of users spoke directly about the oppressive marketing scheme.

"Especially ads on how to improve your looks make me utterly cringe," one said.

The other replied: "'You ARE NOT pretty enough.' 'We can help, though, just buy our garbage.'"

And someone else summed it up perfectly: "Shouldn't this be illegal?"

Join our free newsletter for easy tips to save more, waste less, and help yourself while helping the planet.

Cool Divider