I’m not really a massive television watcher but over the past few days I’ve found myself sort of watching it out of the corner of one eye, partly because I’m having a pause from writing and drawing – or rather I’m psyching up to starting up again, which usually means I like to get practical and do things that don’t require me to be creative. Chopping logs and sticks is a favourite – and at the moment I’m (sort of) sorting the kitchen out with a new sink and work tops.
What can’t escape my notice on the television is the number of adverts asking for donations to various causes and though I am a very generous man (and do donate handsomely and often to worthy causes) I find it quite shocking that literally dozens of charities commission and screen adverts (several times a day) that must cost hundreds of thousands of pounds (that could have gone to the causes?) to show on prime time television.
Perhaps it’s because I don’t watch a lot of television that I’ve noticed (what seems to me like) a saturation of adverts by these organisations, I don’t know, but during the course of two days I was starting (sadly) to feel totally cynical and desensitised. To give a small idea of the volume of ads screened the following were just a few of the dozens shown during those two days:
* sponsoragirl.org £3 month
* WaterAid.org £2 month
* Cancer Research UK Please donate
* Guide dogs £1 week
* Sponsoradog.org £1 week
* UNICEF £3 for a hat or blanket
* Oxfam £3 month
I’ll always give handsomely to worthy causes; people who know me personally know that very well. The NSPCC have been my regular direct debit for at least 20 years. But I don’t want the majority of my donation going on advertising or administration. To be honest I don’t want any of it going there. As well as my direct debit I’ll continue putting hard cash discreetly into the hand of someone who needs it so that I know they are getting all of it.