Viral YouTube Proves Companies' Somber Wuhan Flu Ads Strike One Note

If your email inbox has been anything like mine recently, in the wake of the Wuhan flu reaching U.S. shores, it fills up — every day — with compassionate, but somber missives from company presidents and other, uncreative types. Which would explain the boatload of compassionate, but somber, tv commercials these same people have decided to inflict on the American consumer.


So, unless the “skip” or “jump” forward feature on your streaming platform gets a regular workout, the accompanying ads by these oh-so-caring corporations are starting to sound a little, well, one-note. Literally.

As I’ve mentioned before, bringing a little levity to things – and other people – is important right now. In fact, I’m grateful one of my own friends passed this along (Thanks, Brad).

Because the owners of YouTube channel Microsoft Sam have unleashed someone’s funny mash-up of ads by some very familiar brand names.

The description for the video, which has gone viral, notes how many of the scripts sound “eerily similar,” and jokes about the “somber piano music” that seems to serve as the score for every one.

It continues, generously giving us a virtual BINGO card to play along with the video:

When a company or brand releases a Coronavirus Response ad, they might tell you that we’re living in “uncertain times”, but that “we’re here for you”. They may say their top priority is “people” and “families” by bringing their services to the “comfort and safety of your home”. And don’t forget: “we’re all in this together!” #together


Then goes on to give their theory on why the ads all look and sound the same:

What’s the deal? In reality, many companies have found themselves short on cash, almost overnight. They needed to get a message out  – and quick. They asked their teams to throw something together. Since they can’t film a new ad because of social distancing, they compiled old stock b-roll footage and found the most inoffensive royalty-free piano track they could find.

Now, I can’t unsee (or unhear) the similarities the videomakers point out. And if you’ve seen one… well, you know the saying.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think in the comments section!



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