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Post-Super Bowl Op-Ed: Dear GoDaddy, Please Stop

We continue winding down our Super Bowl XLVII ad-related coverage with an emphatic plea from Harry Woods, partner/creative director at New York-based agency, Woods Witt Dealy & Sons, which has worked with the likes of CNBC, Sundance Channel, Duracell Powermat, Cheerwine and HDMX Jam Bluetooth Speaker over the years. As the headline implies, Woods has strong feelings about GoDaddy’s latest Big Game effort. Take it away, sir.

Stop. Please just stop. Please, please, America begs you. The entire world is on its knees. You’ve got a whole year, once again, to somehow figure out how to stop being such a gigantic d-bag of a company and just knock it off.

There was hope that it wouldn’t happen again this year.

On June 12, 2012, in a New York Times Media Decoder post, Stuart Elliott proclaimed hopefully that “A ‘Grown Up’ GoDaddy Hires an Ad Agency.” Not just any agency, but a good one won the pitch to wrestle the duties of making Super Bowl spots from whoever inside the GoDaddy organization was responsible for pushing the world’s face in this yearly 30-second toilet full of sexism, bad taste, stupidity, lampshade-on-your-head-but nobody-is-laughing jokes, and rich-guy-self-indulgence that company founder Bob Parsons calls “GoDaddyesque” advertising.


There was reason to believe it would actually happen. Parsons, the chief perpetrator of this bad advertising, was heaved up and over by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, a big, tough investment firm that paid $2.25 billion to buy the company, get rid of Parsons and end our long, recurring national nightmare.

KKR probably could have gotten everyone in the world to chip in a nickel to buy the company and make the ads stop.

The new guy they put in charge of the company was quoted as saying “I think there is a different message we have to expose people to.”

A Big Boss Lady at the new agency said, “As a woman, is it my favorite work? No.”

It was all so promising. Responsible professionals promised us they wouldn’t do it again. We let our guards down. Then Sunday rolled around and they did it again. Bad as ever. Maybe even worse, because this time, it was done by professionals who know how to make the horror stick to your retinas.

They showed every kid watching that it’s ok to make fun of the overweight, homely kid. Showed every little girl watching how the height of success is to become a vapid supermodel who will do anything to get more money. Showed every hardworking entrepreneur that it’s ok to act like an asshole once you’ve made it.

All while Danica Patrick, like some metaphor for the rest of us, stood there. Laughing uncomfortably, tainted, complicit, soulless, taking the money year in and year out.

The whole ugly thing once again sent us reaching for a wing bone, nacho or beer bottle cap to dig our eyes out.

So the world asks again. God just stop. Please stop. Can you just please stop the nonsense?

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