Financial woes aren’t the only thing hurting RadioShack’s image lately– many are upset over the technology retailer’s new advertising campaign.
One new commercial called “The Talk” features a dad talking to his adolescent son about “protection.”
“I know you just want to get out and show it off, but you can’t just go swingin’ it around all willy nilly, trying to impress the girls. You gotta be careful,” he warns, before referring to a tablet and adding that the “glass is fragile.”
A second ad, “Laundry,” depicts a father holding a laundry basket, telling his son that “mom just finished the laundry,” and asking “is there anything you want to tell us?” The young male nervously responds, “sometimes I have these funny feelings and I’m not sure what’s going on, but I looked online and it said it was normal.” The dad looks dumbfounded as he replies: “Uh, you left your phone in your jeans and it went through the wash…”
American Family Association (AFA), a non-profit, pro-family organization is particularly concerned about the messages in the ads, and this week sent out an alert urging supporters to contact RadioShack and express disapproval for their “crude, sick and disgusting” commercials. According to AFA President Tim Wildmon, the ads are designed to portray young boys engaging in acts of “flashing and masturbation,” but come across as “immature, juvenile and downright distasteful.”
“RadioShack is already deep in financial trouble, so why would they do anything to offend customers? The company is in danger of being D-listed by the New York Stock Exchange,” he said. “At last check, RadioShack’s stock price was down to $.62 per share, with financial analysts suggesting it is headed for bankruptcy.”
Recent financial reports claim that the 4,000-store chain has around $60 million left, and even that amount is fast falling with Bloomberg.com estimating crunch time may come as early as the quarter ending Nov. 1, 2015.
The AFA insists RadioShack’s ads only serve to detract more customers, and is encouraging Americans to call, email, write letters and make postings on the company’s official Facebook page until they issue a public apology and remove the controversial TV spots.
And dozens are doing just that.
“You'll get no business from me if you don't pull your offensive ads ...featuring sexual references. Keep your integrity and you might retain your corporation,” one person wrote, another noted that “having to stoop to sexual innuendos is beneath decent advertising standards,” while another weighed in: “I've been a customer for [35 plus] years. I ask that you apologize for those you've offended and I may consider coming back to your store."
RadioShack apologized when reached by FOX411 for comment, however a rep for the chain said that its new advertisements are in no way intended to be offensive.
"We apologize if anyone takes them in anything but the light-hearted nature they are intended."
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Hollie McKay has been a FoxNews.com staff reporter since 2007. She has reported extensively from the Middle East on the rise and fall of terrorist groups such as ISIS in Iraq. Follow her on twitter at @holliesmckay