Rant Of The Day is where I get to mouth off about whatever I feel like for however long I like. Theoretically, I'll update my whinge/opinion piece every weekday; in practice, maybe not so often.
Computing giant IBM today reacted speedily to suggestions that it was promoting bestiality in a new ad campaign that appears to feature an image of a man simulating sexual activity with a large wolfhound.
The advertisement, designed to promote IBM's range of server products, includes the phrase "Now it doesn't have to be" above an image of a man mounting a dog (see illustration at right). Among other locations, the multi-page ad appeared in well-known trade publication PC Week.
The advertisement, according to animal activisits, sends a clear message that people who aren't using IBM products may have been forced to have sex with their family pets as an alternative. "That simply isn't so," said Mike McIntosh, president of the national Pets As Therapy Supporters group. "Pets can make wonderful companions for lonely individuals, but that doesn't mean you have to do it with them, doggy-style or otherwise. To suggest that people might have been doing so simply because they don't have IBM product in their homes is, frankly, bizarre and distasteful." McIntosh admitted that he did own an IBM Aptiva PC, and that he'd once nearly seduced his goldfish before thinking better of it.
Although the advertisement has featured in only a handful of US publications, morals campaigners immediately blamed the company -- widely known as 'Big Blue' -- for the decline of Western civilisation generally. A statement from the Call To Australia party read in part: "God-fearing Christians can longer walk the streets without encountering gangs of rabid pet rapists. The only solution is to stone homosexuals, burn single mothers at the stake, ban abortion and force women out of the workforce and back into the kitchen for breeding purposes." No-one is expected to take this seriously, with the possible exception of the Federal Cabinet.
IBM played down the charges. "IBM does not promote sexual activity with dogs, cats or any animals," said a spokesperson for the company's marketing department. "We were simply trying to use humour to get our message across. Boning wolfhounds is immoral and unhygenic."
The spokesperson asked not to be named as she could barely stop herself from cracking up laughing. "That's the dumbest thing I've heard since someone suggested that IBM should buy Lotus," she added. When informed that IBM had in fact bought Lotus in 1995, the spokesperson said: "No fucker told me."
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