The New Year is but a week old, yet Twitter outrage is already in full force.
Jamie Oliver released a photo the other day. There was the cheeky lad standing in front of a giant Coke can, holding up sixteen sachets of sugar. It took me a moment to see why this photo was flooding my social media streams.
But there it was: in the familiar Coca Cola font, across the giant can, the word ‘diabetes’.
And my heart sank.
Not because it was there; unsophisticated messaging at its worse, and we’ve all seen it before. It’s unimaginative and, quite frankly, boring.
No. The reason was because I could taste the outrage. I could see what was happening and I could see that the outcome would be. Without reading them, I knew the words. I could feel the anger.
Jamie’s response was swift. He apologised on Twitter and removed the photo.
I love Jamie Oliver – I always have. I think the work he does supporting better nutritional choices for kids at school and people everywhere is really important. His profile allows for great reach and he usually is spot on with what he says.
His messaging is generic – it needs to be to reach the masses – but one of the things that I admire is that he doesn’t overstep the mark like some other celebrities. I can’t recall him ever making health claims, other than urging people to eat as much fresh food as they can and encouraging people to cook at home. ‘Teach your kids to cook,’ he says. That’s good advice!
Of course he missed the mark here – drinking too much Coke doesn’t cause type 1 diabetes and really, it’s far too simplistic to say that it causes type 2 diabetes.
But can I get angry about it? Not anymore.
Maybe my response is clouded by the fact that I am currently in the middle of an enormously enjoyable holiday where the most stressful thing I’ve encountered each day is deciding which hat to wear to face the cold. Perhaps I am too relaxed and chilled out and basking in the glow of doing nothing but spending time with my husband, daughter and some wonderful friends.
In my incredibly fortunate position of enjoying said holiday, maybe it’s easy for me to just dismiss this. It’s easy to not let it add to stresses and pressures of work and life. It’s actually quite liberating! Perhaps something to try more of when reality returns at the end of the month and I go back to work and back to ‘real life.’ Life can be stressful enough without adding social media outrage to the list!