Monday, May 30, 2011


We accidently coined a new acronym last night in an e-mail to a kindred blogger - SMOG. SMOG stands for Social Media Own Goal. And surprise; it's the Labour Party who has scored.

Last week, Labour launched it's animated Let's Not game last week. It wasn't the success that Labour was expecting, as can be seen from the comments in this post on Red Alert. Even Labour supporters were unconvinced.

That's not the SMOG though. Also late last week, Labour launched an attack on National list MP Paul Quinn over comments about drunk girls made on the Backbenchers TV programme. Labour, and in particular Trevor Mallard claimed that Quinn had implied that drunk girls were in some way responsible if they get attacked or raped. Quinn has denied that his comments were meant that way.

Yesterday we stumbled across Capitalism Bad, Tree Pretty. In a post entitled Let's not tell rape jokes. blogger Maia says:

The Labour Party's Let's Not game has been out for a few days.* I'm not linking to it, for reasons that will become apparent, but I do want to discuss one of the offensive parts of it.**

If someone puts their finger in someone else's anus without their consent then that is sexual assault. This is still true if the two people involved are on a rugby field.

Ten years ago John Hopoate puts his finger in three other players anuses during a rugby league match. Apparently the people who were making this flash game thought "You know what we should do? We should animate this in an amusing way. That'll help us win the election and be awesome." Apparently people being violated without their consent is kind of funny if it's men on the rugby field.

One of the basic rape-myths that help uphold a culture where sexual assault is endemic is that sometimes consent doesn't matter. If you ever say that some people's violation doesn't matter - if you ever set some people up as unrapeable - then you, or in this case the Labour Party, are upholding that rape myth.

Oh dear. One one hand the Labour Party condemns the comments of a National MP on the issue of rape. On the other hand, the Labour Party makes a joke out of sexual assault in a sporting context.

Labour's record with social media campaigns over the last few months has been woeful. This latest SMOG, brought to public attention by a blogger who is normally no friend of the Right adds fuel to the fire.


homepaddock said...

SMOG - campaign word of the week.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Very good, IV2.

Of course the Greens have had their own embarrassment for some time. FROG