Breaking news: Ken breaks with Barbie

And no, not because Ken is seeing someone else or suddenly feels more attracted to boys. The real reason is that Ken does not want a relationship with a girl that has something to do with deforestation.

This message comes from Greenpeace who accuses Mattel to have business relationships with a company renowned for the cutting of forests and fragile rainforests.

Greenpeace is known for its parodies of famous brands. Brands and especially the reputation of these brands are often the Achilles heel of multinationals. Greenpeace has previously criticized Kitkat, the Dutch government and Dutch energy suppliers Nuon and Essent by using their trademarks in different and sometimes aggressive ways.

This campaign is tamer than what we are used of Greenpeace. Greenpeace is using the Mattel brands, like Barbie and Ken as well as the appearance of Barbie and Ken, but has not altered these marks or appearances in a harmful manner. The message is funny but remains within the safe lines. As the campaign has been launched globally, Greenpeace may have wanted to be a bit more cautious. Nevertheless, Greenpeace gives us a new example of playing with famous trademarks.



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Arnaud Bos

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