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Snopes’ take on the viral Volkwagen ad

Further cementing its position as an opinion site, Snopes makes the following pronouncement in its article concerning the absolutely hilarious “Small but tough.” ad:

Companies often try to obscure the connections between themselves and their viral ads, sometimes claiming that promotions were “unauthorized” or “accidentally released.” Though this technique may be effective in generating publicity, it can also backfire: If someone does indeed produce an unauthorized viral ad that creates negative publicity for the business it supposedly promotes, how can a company prove they weren’t behind it? This is the dilemma currently faced by Volkswagen regarding a viral ad seemingly calculated to offend as many human beings as possible.

I haven’t seen too many people offended by this…Miss Em notes,

i think it’s very clever – of course, we all want car bombers to be thwarted in some way (well, most people do, anyway) and it also shows how strong the car is….. but does it make people associate that car with car bombers?

While I’m not particularly concerned about people associating the car with suicide bombers (if you take the ad literally, the bomber would have to be stupid to actually use the car), it did occur to me that a suicide bomber might choose to use one in the future because we’d never expect it. But that, really, is the only (extraordinarily minor) concern I can admit to having on the subject. I certainly was not “offended”. So I suppose the next question to ask is this: is Volkswagen currently suffering due to this “negative publicity”? Or was that simply another Snopes opinion?