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Invisible Monkey II: PETA Defends Dodge, Gets All Up In Our Grille

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Invisible monkey in Dodge's Year-End Tent Event Sale advertisement

Invisible monkey in Dodge's Year-End Tent Event Sale advertisement

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Ah, the Interwebz. We wrote a little story last Thursday about how Dodge digitally erased the image of a monkey from an end-of-year clearance commercial after People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals complained.

And it sorta went viral. Tens of thousands of people viewed it, and more than 50 people left comments. Many of them, ummmmm, not terribly PETA-supportive.

Well, today we got a letter from a gent named Michael Lyubinsky at PETA. It said:

We saw your recent story "So Is Chrysler's Invisible Ad Monkey Flipping Off PETA?" about Dodge's decision to edit a chimpanzee out of its commercial after learning from PETA about the abuse that young chimpanzees and orangutans suffer in the entertainment industry.

We wanted to direct you to this recent statement in which Dodge says that it is "firmly committed to never using great apes in [its] advertisements again." The carmaker also states that it is "not making light of the issue" and that the company hopes its "attempt at humor keeps the discussion about animal rights alive."

We at PETA have enjoyed Dodge's recent incarnation of the ad and are thrilled that Dodge has joined the growing number of companies--including AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Samsung, Europcar, Sprint Nextel, Subaru, Honda, Levi Strauss & Co., PUMA, Yahoo!, Johnson & Johnson, and Gap, Inc.--that have pulled the plug on existing ads featuring great apes or have pledged not to use great apes in any future advertising.

OK, fair enough. It's the right thing to do for a pressure group to compliment a company that caves in to its demands. We get that.

Here's the problem: We still think that Dodge's "attempt at humor" basically spanked PETA by just erasing the image of the monkey. We're hard-pressed to see how the altered ad "keeps the discussion about animal rights alive."

But maybe we're too literal here. What do you think: Who won here, PETA, Dodge, the great apes ... or all of the above?

Leave us your thoughts in the Comments below.

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Comments (27)
  1. Dodge is not sincere & had the last laugh. PETA who I do support, I'm surprised they didn't see it and jumped too soon at making claims of Dodge joining others in making a change. Dodge still used the ad the primate was in. Then they said they are "firmly committed to never using great apes in [its] advertisements again." Well, they didn't use a great ape, they used a chimpanzee. To humanize an animal and use it in such a stupid way is only showing the backwoods mentality of the company. Who in return are only appealing to the same kind of people. Which are the same greasy people you will find at the circus eating hotdogs made of by products (slaughtered animal waste), soda pop and cotton candy. Chuckling at the animals being put through painfull and unnatural positions and situations for those using half a brain. It's really sad.
     
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  2. I love the creativity of Dodge in digitally removing the chimp--and I'm not backwoods or greasy.
     
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  3. Wherever PETA is involved, the animals never win. They're all about pulling stunts that make them visible so that they can draw in more donor dollars. Their campaigns don't work because if they did we would have seem some serious changes in the 30 odd years they've been operating.
    Veganism (i.e. the end of ALL animal use) is the only route that will begin to address the rights and conditions of animals but they never actively promote that unequivocally because it would drive away the dollars of people who don't like message. They try to be all things to all people and end up achieving nothing.
     
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  4. I believe Dodge should have told PETA to go to hell. I cannot believe those idiot at PETA have nothing else to do but to complain about this "nothing" issue.
     
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  5. Check out this stupid video PETA made: http://meat.org
     
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  6. The only PETA I support is People Eating Tasty Animals.
     
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  7. I used to support PETA. But these days they just come across as a bunch of irrational lunatics.
     
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  8. Kudos to Dodge-it got people talking about their cars!
    I agree with Tim-does PETA have too much time on their perfect little hands?
     
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  9. Why did Dodge just 'spank' PeTA or 'give them the finger'? Why didn't they just refuse to remove the chimp from their ad?
    Where was the proof that this animal was abused in any way? Why didn't Dodge stand up for the 'little guy'....the owner and trainer of the chimp? Has Dodge ever used a dog or horse in a commercial? Would they if PeTA claimed that training dogs or riding horses was abuse? Why would Dodge cave in to a radical domestic terrorist outfit like PeTA?
    I will never buy another Dodge and I'm sure many American's who value their freedom to own the animal of their choice and work at the job of their choice will make the same choice. Boycott Dodge; not for using a chimp in their ad, but for caving in to domestic terror, PeTA, and refusing to stand up for the little guy.
    PeTA forces these animal trainers out of work. By claiming abuse they attack the companies (Dodge) they work for as well as the network, sponsor and supporters by threatening boycotts and bad publicity. Then are then forced to sign the 'pledge' not to use the animals in the future using the same threats. They are criminals who use Mafia tactics to get their way and claim a victory.
    I own a Dodge, but I will be trading it in for another American car, and I urge anyone who owns a Dodge to do the same. Shame on PeTA and shame on Dodge!
     
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  10. I agree that Dodge's response was flippant. It's keeping discussion alive, but it's a very ignorant, ill-informed discussion. People are not even bothering to find out what PETA's point was. Because they don't like PETA and because Dodge's response goaded that really ignorant part of people that just likes to jump on the bandwagon and bash the unpopular kid on the block. PETA did and does have a point. The Human Society and other animal organizations agree with the position that these animals shouldn't be used in this way and that because of these animals strength and intelligence, abuse will inevitably happen. How incredibly SAD that people don't actually do their own research to see what PETAs point was. Is this what being an American is all about? Forming opinions on little to no information? It makes me think maybe we shouldn't try to be increasing the voter rate in this country. Instead, we should just start with the basics and teach people how to research the issues and think through the implications of their stances.
     
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  11. Kudos to Dodge for thuming their nose at PETA. I got it, they did not bow down to them. PETA is an organization of lunatics that want to dictate to the rest of us what we eat, what we wear, and separating us from the animals around us, including our pets. How on earth anyone can think this chimp was harmed is beyond me. I am sick to death of PETA and HSUS (PETA in a suit). We who eat meat and own animal just want the right to live our lives as we see fit. Why do PETA and HSUS try to force their ideals on us all? Wake up people before it is too late!
     
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  12. And surprisingly PETA can't even recognize when people are laughing at them. They have become a parody of themselves. I bet their marketing team thinks this stuff is really effective when they have to justify their jobs to the bosses. Props to them for taking time out from euthanizing rescue animals to spend their time doing something that accomplishes nothing.
     
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  13. ANYone who believes in or supports PETA is as nutso as they are.
    Lorna - DO you know their agenda? If not - you need to find out!!!! You may not be so willing to support such a hateful group!
     
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  14. @Animal Lover ~ I am not a PETA supporter. I'm a truth supporter. I think PETA needs to hire a marketing and strategy team and completely re-think the way they do things. That said, even though I dislike the way PETA does things, I did not automatically assume they were full of it. I decided I would find out what their position was. I found that other animal groups supported this position.
    People again and again keep saying "What's the problem? How was the animal harmed?" As thinking members of society, we should be able to thoughtfully explore all sides of the argument, not just have a kneejerk reaction because we dislike the messenger. Go do your research as to why PETA said what they did. Then go beyond that and see if others have the same ideas and why these animals should not be used in this way.
    It's amazing people can take the time to express such outrage on PETA's position but not actually do any research. It's not a popularity contest folks. Just because we dislike PETA, doesn't mean they're always wrong.
     
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  15. Dodge should not have taken the monkey out of the ad. That is something so trivial that it is unbelievable that some crazy PETA A**HOLE would even make a fuss over it. If that is the case, PETA needs to break into everybody's house that has a pet and is training it to fetch and threaten to sue the sh*t out of them since an animal doing a trick is so inhumane. PETA you suck and are crazy. You need to worry about the animals being beaten and stop acting so stupid over stuff that doesn't matter.
     
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  16. PETA got spanked! Thank you Dodge for using creativity and a sense of humor in doing it.
     
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  17. Pam, the monkey in the ad is beaten and yelled at in order to train it.
     
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  18. Great way to handle political-correctness-gone-mad of PETA and its cohorts--it gets the nuttier ones off their backs yet actually enhances the humour of the ad. They could've ignored PETA's request but then they'd organise a boycott or some idiocy. They could've jet cut the last few seconds of the add but that would've basically "castrated" it and it would've been what PETA expected.
    I think they should make the "invisible monkey" a recurring character in the ads for Dodge dealerships--poke fun at them as much as possible. Or, maybe have a different, slightly politically incorrect "confetti blaster" for each promotion, with Michael C Hall doing the deadban narration "oh look, it's a(n) 'x'", where x is, say, Lassie, or a dwarf clown, or a former child star that hasn't done anything for years, or whatever.
     
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  19. I don't agree with Peta's strategies, but kudos to them for pressuring companies to drop the use of great apes in their advertisemebnts. I've personally done enough research into the use and treatment of these animals to know that they should NEVER be used in entertainment and adverts.
     
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  20. Everyone calm down. I spoke to the chimp and he said he really digs the Evel Knievel suit and he loves confetti. Although he's a little peeved that Dodge erased him in the ad, he commented that the checks still clear.
     
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  21. And I thought that Dodge were simply trying to erase there stupidity since most of us know that a chimp is an ape - NOT a monkey!
     
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  22. Jenni posted: 8/17/2010:
    "Pam, the monkey in the ad is beaten and yelled at in order to train it"
    Evidence, please. Provide evidence that the chimp in the ad was harmed in any way at all. Please document your rather outrageous claim, or, refrain from making such statements. In other words, obtain a clue, or, a life.
     
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  23. Umm, if you guys did any research, you would see that animals who are trained are poorly treated and often times denied basic necessities such as food and water until they perform their "trick". They are also yelled at and beaten as Pam has mentioned. And, to all the people who said that Dodge is making fun of PETA, you are wrong. Again, doing just a little research you would find more info--Dodge made a statement on their website regarding this commercial. Check it out for yourself: http://www.dodge.com/en/invisible_monkey/
    If they were making fun of PETA, they wouldn't have put PETA's link on their website.
    And, Thothamon, you are so clever; I haven't heard that one before...YAWN.
     
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  24. Is Dodge aware that chimps are not Great Apes, and human beings are? Guess not.
     
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  25. Hey everyone, you have to LISTEN to the differences in the two ads.. this is where the true humor is. The final word in the revised (invisible) ad is "unbelieveable".. IE, hey PETA, you have got to be kidding. Dodge definately suggesting to PETA, "get a life" and that it is unbelieveable you are picking this nit.
     
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  26. When I think PETA, I can only think of two ridiculous ad campaigns:
    1: "Drink Beer, Not Milk" They plastered posters with this slogan all over college campuses - drawing major fallout from MADD.
    2: "Eat a Whale" This one was some odd argument basically saying that if you "have" to kill something and eat its meat, eat whale meat because that way you can "feed your meat addiction" while torturing and killing one animal as opposed to several hundred. (they compared the meat content of whales to pigs and chickens for comparison)
     
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  27. Where is Dodge manking fun of PETA?
    They said they were upset to know the poor conditions these animals are kept under, and even linked animal cruelty information to their website. I also don't see any irony in their words.
    Well done, Dodge.
     
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