#bellletstalk about branded causes

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Bell Canada has taken mental illness – a very serious issue that affects the daily actions and interactions of millions of Canadians – and turned it into a marketing campaign.

If you think I’m being callous or unkind, you’re very, very wrong.

Canadaland – one of our last vestiges of great investigative reporting – has released this story on #BellLetsTalk day (today) to expose the superficial nature with which a company deals with mental illness.

A corporation doesn’t care.  People might, but a corporation doesn’t.  It seems sometimes people don’t even care:

… an hour after my chat with the staff, I was terminated for reasons unknown.

When I was fired, I was told multiple times I would find out the following week on what grounds that decision was made. They were unable to tell me then and there.

I was fired an hour after handing in a doctor’s note for 10 days off work. I was fired an hour after opening up about my struggles. It seemed I was fired because struggling with mental health was nothing more than a burden to my employer.

The double entendre of Bell’s message is also worth questioning.

Bell monetizes conversation, whether its land lines, cell phones or even one-way conversation with things like TV and radio shows.

Is Bell Canada giving all Canadians ‘all you can eat’ access to cell phone texting, talking and other services today to show that they care?

Last I looked, the answer was no.

Encouraging people to talk to a corporation shows everything that’s wrong with today’s corporate-driven society where any company can pick up a cause, make it theirs and turn it into a marketing campaign.

And … just to add icing to the cake, they deduct all of the costs as being part of a charitable effort, resulting in us paying for their promotion.

Does this make sense?

They say it’s about awareness, but awareness for what?

Where are the organizations like Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health (CAMIMH) or the Canadian Mental Health Association (CAMH)?  Why are we not sharing their contact details and hastagging them?

If a company really wants to take any issue seriously, why do they insist on having their logo front and centre and the issue taking a very distant step away?

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