Don’t drive like a…

So I got this source from across the pond[1] in the good old United Kingdom. It was an article about the new road safety campaign in Southern Australia. If you click the picture above you can see more clearly what the billboards say on them. The article written by Metro which is a news reporting website and paper was basically an information article. It wrote about all the details of the story and don’t really, give much of an opinion, I used this as a secondary source as it was not the original billboards.

To be honest the article claimed it was a controversy and I agree because I can see why it would be labelled like that but to be honest I find it kind of humorous. When I first saw it I nearly fell out of my chair laughing at the implication of it all. It was hilarious to me and I guess it seems offensive but how much more offensive than other road safety campaigns.  Anyway the article highlighted the points of contention and I think that it really displayed Australian characteristics (not the article but the road safety campaign.)

The article although didn’t give much opinion it shared he opinion of others about it which mainly consisted of people saying it should be removed as it is to offensive and blah blah blah… But i think that this is a reflection of the modern Australia today and the way Australians think and consider themselves. It is a campaign which is targeted to a younger demographic and it consists of language which you would hear young people talking in, it has adopted the slang of its demographic to make itself more relatable. I think that again this demonstrates Australian humour and intelligence, I mean the last billboard in the line up is clever as. I took me a couple of seconds to figure it out but when I did it made me chuckle under my breath.

Throughout this whole research process I’ve noticed that a lot of the sources picked really reflect on Australian humour and this is a value which i think that can be seen in nearly all of my sources. These road safety campaigns are also a reflection of its target audience as it wouldn’t really be put up there and so hardly fought against and for if it didn’t have some relevance to the local residents. This campaign not only showed the funny side of Australian spirit but a side which was truly reflective of the residents. A campaign like this wouldn’t have worked unless it was a reflection of the people living near the target area. It shows the way Australians view themselves and the way humour is so ingrained into our lives.

Unlike the other sources which made a generalised view of Australia this was a more targeted one and therefore quite different to the others, it represented the modern Australian as most of the people reported to have an issue were older residents like MP Bob Such. It also portrayed Australia as a very modern place that is very upfront and doesn’t really beat around the bush, if you know what I’m saying. I think hat hits source raises another issue as this language is not only used by Australians but I’m sure other youths in the world, I asked my cousins from New Zealand[2] and apparently there are some common terminologies used and it think that this modernisation  of language and slang has become  universal now. I mean back in the day you could tell someone’s class by how they spoke and their accents, like in Brittan people with a cockney accent was usually presumed t be a part of the lower working class[3] and also the language/slang used would be a dead giveaway. Now I kind of feel like slang is not really specific to were you grow up, I think with globalisation, like the English language, slang like the ones used in the billboard will be really common and universally understood. I think this speaks bounds as things are not just uniquely specific to a country and to be honest I’m not sure if that’s good or bad.

I think there are questions here that this campaign raises unintentionally for me.

  1. The first and somewhat only relevant one to this campaign is about multiculturalism and the sharing of slang taking away from identity? And on another branch language and its relation to identity itself

Anyway the billboard itself gives a lot if insight into Australia den the way Australian youth and the modern Australian think about themselves.

[1] Do we still say that if we’re not from the states

[2] Yes I picked up the phone and called my cousins. It was not fun. At all

[3] “Where Is the Cockney Dialect Spoken?” Where Is the Cockney Dialect Spoken? N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Aug. 2012. <;.



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