Towards Dumb

Towards Dumb

imageIn 2017 Transport for NSW brought in the towards zero campaign complete with binary emotive advertising and dumb binary questions: how many fatalities is an acceptable number? Then running an ad showing a group of relatives and the actor responds with zero. You can see the dumb down binary ad below:

Victoria runs a similar campaign: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-Y7K2aHqDA&pbjreload=10

Both campaigns run on the logic of numerics and binary language, the trouble is road statistics have doubled since the campaign. If statistics are the demonstration of effectiveness will the government now cancel the campaign? In NSW the road statistics are the worst in 10 years with the Christmas statistics double those of 2016. Surely one must be judged by one’s own criteria for effectiveness? Not likely. Too much sunk cost in the ideology to see it go that quickly.

Image result for toward zero campaignWhen one commits to the religious ideology of zero even though the criteria of numbers contradict one’s own campaign, the last thing one does is admit that the campaign is a failure. The search is on to find a hundred reasons why zero is not a failure; such is the nature of the nonsense ideological commitment to zero.

Zero is not just a number but an ideology and a language that frames the safety message in such a way that people can ignore it. When your language is about nothing people do nothing. When you set a campaign based on counting people learn to ignore it. When you speak nonsense language to people they laugh and move on.

Any campaign that uses the discourse of zero is set up to fail. People don’t connect to absolutes nor the nonsense of statistics and numerical thinking. The statistics demonstrate this. So for 2018 my guess is we will go to beyond zero, zero plus 1 or zero big zero.

When will the zero ideologues understand that zero doesn’t work.

Dr Rob Long

Dr Rob Long

Expert in Social Psychology, Principal & Trainer at Human Dymensions
Dr Rob Long

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Dr Rob Long
PhD., MEd., MOH., BEd., BTh., Dip T., Dip Min., Cert IV TAA, MRMIA Rob is the founder of Human Dymensions and has extensive experience, qualifications and expertise across a range of sectors including government, education, corporate, industry and community sectors over 30 years. Rob has worked at all levels of the education and training sector including serving on various post graduate executive, post graduate supervision, post graduate course design and implementation programs.

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