The British Army has come under fire for its latest recruitment drive targeting young people with posters calling on “snowflakes, selfie addicts, class clowns, phone zombies, and me, me, millennials” to join the military.
The campaign is a bid to attract young people to join the UK forces by claiming the army is looking for special skills in order to convince young people that their snowflake attitudes, obsession with their phones, and passion for video games make them right for a career in combat.
New ad campaign from British Army targeting gaming addicts “me me me millennials”, “snowflakes” & “selfie addicts” of Gen Z launches this month. pic.twitter.com/P4SjPMVIqy
— Lucy Fisher (@LOS_Fisher) January 3, 2019
“Me-me-me millennials, your army needs your self-belief,” and “snowflakes, your army needs your compassion,” are some of the slogans featured on the posters.
The campaign’s television ads show young people being undervalued in their jobs, and claims the army is looking for such people as it recognises their potential. The drab work scenes are cut with exciting scenes of soldiers delivering humanitarian aid and other military moments.
The recruitment drive is targeting 16 to 25-year-olds, also known as Generation Z (those born between 1995-2015), to join the army’s ranks. In the UK, 16-year-olds are allowed to join the army.
Between 2015-2016, more than a fifth of new recruits were under 18.
I’m just glad Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher are not around to see what has become of Great Britain.
— Ginger Lady (@GingerLady6) January 3, 2019
They will end up with some soldiers taking selfies with the enemy pushing in the background, some soldiers filing complaints for being under enemy fire and asking for “right to not get shoot at”
— suyusekicenadam🇹🇷 (@TaylanAltnel) January 3, 2019
Just leaked. The armies new training program. pic.twitter.com/3Ms5Fm6Hdf
— JohnHalen (@John88996080) January 3, 2019
Much like the tobacco industry, the army is always looking for new ways to target young people to encourage them to sign up for military service.
In June 2018, it used social media to target “stressed and vulnerable” 16-year-olds facing exam results with a campaign that said the army was open to those who didn’t get good results.
Despite its best efforts, the army continues to fail to reach its recruitment targets, even after enlisting the help of private company Capita, who was awarded a £495-million (US$622 million) contract in 2012. The company has since upped its contract to £677 million, but remains short of its 2020 target of 82,500 fully trained troops and 30,000 reserves, with just 77,000 troops.
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