I saw the HP Ink Advantage ad and I felt something was not right. As I saw it more times I felt that there were several things not right about it. HP should withdraw it in the interest of our school going children so that they do not think that it is ok not to sincerely work on a project assignment if you have money to buy a printer. Here are the things not right:
1. The mother seems proud and even happy when she says that everything happens at the last minute: She is dressed in western clothes, her house appears financially well-off. And she seems to be approving of everything happening at the last moment. Is she educated? Did she and her husband make this much money doing everything at the last moment? What has she been doing all the while when the kids were developing the habit of doing everything at the last minute? If she knows that ‘it is hard to do good things in a rush’, what is the solution? Change the habit of doing things at the last minute – in the interest of her children and their future colleagues – or approve of it and buy a printer at home??
2. The project is done by the whole family and not the laggard boy: Is that how his school is expecting him to learn (if at all)? The schools assign projects to students so that they learn by doing. As if doing the project at the last moment is not bad enough, this ad gives a false impression to children about the value of self learning.
3. The ‘last moment’ project gets an A+: Another bad, bad signal to growing children – that unlike other students, who might have planned their projects, worked on it for days ahead of the deadline, the laggard gets an A+. I wonder why. Snazzy printing? Are the judges fools? Or is the teacher that assigns such projects that can be done in a jiffy if you can afford a printer at home?
4. The students who watch this ad but cannot afford to buy the printer have nowhere to go: Are projects prized for their glamor? Is glamor a make up that can be patched up before going on to a stage? What if you are one of the students whose parents cannot afford to buy a printer at home?
By the way, if you have not watched the ad, it is here: