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The Voice of the Aflac Duck Fired

 
 
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 08:39 am
Gibert Gottfried, the voice of the Aflac duck (and btw) one of my favorite commercials, has been fired.
apparently, he was found tweeting about the Japanese tragedy in a lighthearted manner.

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/BUSINESS/03/14/georgia.aflac.duck/

Aflac is sending out a casting call for a new duck.

It seems to me that the internet is so pervasive, that a person has to be very careful about what he writes there, even in jest.

What do you think? Should Gottfried have been fired? Are you careful about what you write in Facebook, or on Twitter?


 
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 08:41 am
@Phoenix32890,
Aflac is VERY big in Japan. The Japanese market is insane for insurance products and Aflac was one of the early companies to penetrate there in a major way. I'm sure they are sensitive of how they are viewed. Still, the guy is a voice actor.
PUNKEY
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:10 am
The privileged need to be more careful.

He was out of line and crude.
The company had no choice, did it?
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:14 am
@PUNKEY,
Quote:
He was out of line and crude.
as are the majority of the best comedians...
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:25 am
@engineer,
Quote:
Still, the guy is a voice actor.
Just another example on how employers are subjecting their employees to moral purity tests. We will soon look at the old days when morality clauses were vigorously enforced on teachers as the permissive good old days, because back then most other help was allowed to have a private life that was walled off from their professional life.

Also, the best comedians are almost to a man/woman twisted fucks. They will ALWAYS fail the purity tests. I happen to enjoy the art, and I think that they bring a lot of value to the collective. I vigorously object to throwing them out of work for being offensive.
Green Witch
 
  3  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:48 am
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
Just another example on how employers are subjecting their employees to moral purity tests.


It has nothing to do with forced "purity". He was hired to represent the company in the voice of their mascot. He was identified with AFLAC. He went public with these "jokes". It's not like he told them to a friend over a private dinner. If one of my employees made nasty sexist or racist jokes where any of my customers could hear I would fire them because I would not want my company to be associated with that mentality. If you accept the paycheck you should consider the connection to your employer. Would you continue to work for a company you knew made generous donations to the KKK or Nazi party? It works both ways. The jokes were not even funny.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:57 am
@Green Witch,
Quote:
It has nothing to do with forced "purity". He was hired to represent the company in the voice of their mascot.
Has Gottfried been representing AFLAC as himself? It might be, but I have never seen him do it. All I know is that he was the voice of their duck in America, until this blew up I never even knew it was him doing it. If Gottfried had a contract to represent AFLAC, and as such was doing PR work for them in trade shows, or was doing political lobbying for them then perhaps they had cause, but my sense is that he was never more than a actor playing a part.....an artist.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 10:58 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:
Has Gottfried been representing AFLAC as himself? It might be, but I have never seen him do it.


From Phoenix's link:

http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2011/BUSINESS/03/14/georgia.aflac.duck/t1larg.gottfried.aflac.gi.jpg
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 11:30 am
@sozobe,
Ya, I saw that, but can find nothing else. So he posed with the duck one time, have you got anything else?

I dont think AFLAC comes away looking too good, because now the question has to be why didn't they fire Gottfried in 08 when in mulitible public settings he did the "joke" about Bob Saget ass raping the Olsen twins as kids in 1990?? He does it here 4 minutes minutes in

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/olivia/2008/08/21/olivia-
Quote:
3. Gilbert Gottfried: Mary-Kate and Ashley
Olsen walk into a bar. They say
to the bartender, "Give us two
ass-hurts." The bartender says,
"How do you make an ass hurt?"
The Olsen twins say, "Well, Bob
Saget hands you a chocolate milk
that he just made, and you wake
up three hours later lying on
your stomach with your pajamas around your ankles"



or the aristocrats "joke"
http://www.jokeroo.com/videos/yt/19c4-gilbert-gottfried-aristocrats-joke.html
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 11:47 am
@hawkeye10,
Quote:
The joke goes like this—and don't worry, I'm not ruining anything, because there's nothing, really, to ruin: A family of four and their pet dog go into a talent scout's office. "We have an act we want to show you," the father says. "OK," says the talent scout. "Go ahead, then." What follows is pure improvisation on the part of the teller, a series of scenarios both inventive and unregenerately obscene, a recitation of bestial acts, scatological acrobatics, and sexual transgressions so grotesque and despicable that they make the volumes of de Sade seem like so many greeting cards. This is the heart of the joke, and it can go on for 30 minutes or more: It's usually compared to a jazz improvisation, though a better analogy is the dozens. Taboos thus far unknown to mankind are broached and violated, offense is created where before there existed only the dark, buried secrets of the primeval mind. It all ends with a punch line that is, perversely enough, the least funny part—a sort of anti-punch line, really, which is nevertheless as catchy as a pop hook.
Advertisement

OK: It's not much of a joke. And yet to hear a real master tell it—and 75 different comedians tell the joke, or portions of it, in The Aristocrats—is like contemplating a Picasso painting of an apple. The inventiveness of the performance obliterates the banality of the material. What's more, the variations are endless, and endlessly anatomized: the difference between the way men and women tell the joke, how it plays into the racial politics of comedy, and so on.

In fact, the pliable nature of The Aristocrats is part of what makes it so funny. You laugh at its elasticity the way children giggle over self-transforming superheroes or Play-Doh: because it makes the world seem slippery and surprising. Two people tell it backward—one of which gets a huge laugh, the other of which bombs. And there are all sorts of nice discoveries: I have never seen Whoopi Goldberg actually be funny, for example—except here. I've never heard of Sarah Silverman at all, but she deserves stardom solely for her dreamy, wandering Aristocrats routine, which ends with a perfectly timed accusation aimed at the superannuated public-access troll Joe Franklin. In one hair-raising segment, Andy Richter tells the joke in a cheerful voice to his newborn son; in another, a pregnant woman named Judy Gold tells it in the first person, using her fetus as an indecent prop; and Bob Saget's career as a family-friendly, good-natured entertainer is, as of the release date of this movie, over.
And then there's Gilbert Gottfried's justly famous, death-defying recitation of the joke—probably the first time in years that it's been told in public—at a Friar's Club roast in honor of Hugh Hefner a few weeks after Sept. 11. The comedians in the film speak of Gottfried's performance the way basketball players speak of Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point game, and justly so, if the footage Jillette and Provenza show bears any resemblance to what it was like to see it in person.
"It's the perfect joke," one comedian says. "The joke sucks," says another, and they're both right. The joke is perfect because the joke sucks—in fact, it's nonexistent. You get to the end, and it proves to be nothing, nothing at all, but an excuse after the fact for comedians to get as stupid and as clever, simultaneously, as they possibly can. It's a sterling example of what I think of as Negative Surprise, that is, the shock you feel when something expected—redemption, explanation, narrative satisfaction, or even just a punch line—doesn't happen. In fact, nothing happens in The Aristocrats: That's what's so funny. Watching it is like watching a scrofulous performance of Waiting for Godot (which, after all, Beckett wanted to cast with clowns). It's all very postmodern: inbred, self-referential, and utterly pointless. It's also absolutely hilarious, at least to some of us. At the screening I went to, I myself was laughing so hard I was in tears, as were many other people; but the gray-haired gentleman beside me remained motionless and expressionless (which made him as funny as anything that was happening up on the screen)

http://www.slate.com/id/2123558/


Gottfried did this first right around the time AFLAC hired him, they knew damn well what it is he did. He earthquake "jokes" were perfectly in character for him...
0 Replies
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 11:53 am
gilbert makes no secret of his humour, he was a regular on the stern show for years, it's always amazed me he's lasted as long as he has at aflac, i have no problem with it myself
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 12:30 pm
@djjd62,
I suspect it has more to do with the timing than the content.
0 Replies
 
Irishk
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 01:00 pm
Quote:
"Japan is really advanced. They don't go to the beach. The beach comes to them."

"I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, 'They'll be another one floating by any minute now."


Maybe what CNN sees as 'lighthearted' would be seen as inappropriate or even cruel by others. I suspect the powers that be at AFLAC are seeing the latter.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 01:20 pm
Japanese Aflac commercials

Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 01:33 pm
@engineer,
Here are some of the jokes he tweeted.

http://www.okmagazine.com/2011/03/gilbert-gottfried-tweets-japan-tsunami-jokes/



hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 01:40 pm
@Butrflynet,
did you notice they are running 41%-59% funny-not funny on the poll??? AFLAC may or may not have helped themselves with the Japanese, depending upon their sense of humor, but making jokes that 41% think are funny a firing offense is not going to go over too well in America....
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 01:49 pm
@hawkeye10,
Very few people in the US care one way or another about who makes quacking noises. I think the only reason this is an issue at all is because Aflac fired him. Without that, no one would know or care about some off jokes.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 02:15 pm
@engineer,
Quote:
Without that, no one would know or care about some off jokes.
Well, they DID fire him, and this story is burning up the internet....AFLAC is now #2 on Google trends.
0 Replies
 
George
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 02:46 pm
Be interesting to know the terms of his employment.
Maybe Gottfried has grounds to sue them.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 15 Mar, 2011 02:57 pm
@George,
Quote:
Be interesting to know the terms of his employment.
The terms are generally "you have a job up until the time you are told that you dont"......This is America after all.

They call this "right to work" in Georgia law, where AFLAC is located.
 

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