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Honest Slogans is a single topic blog featuring company logos with satirical taglines conveying widely held stereotypes or unpleasant truths that are omitted in brand advertising.
On December 30th, 2011, graphic designer Clif Dickens launched the Honest Slogans Tumblr blog, with the first post featuring the Pepsi logo and the slogan “Is Pepsi Okay?” (shown below)
As explained in an interview with Dickens, he got the inspiration for the blog after going to a restaurant and ordering a Coke. The waitress said, “We don’t have Coke. Is Pepsi okay?” After recalling how often he heard this statement in restaurants, he decided to start creating a collection of brands and what he really thought of them.
While parodies of corporate branding and advertisements have existed for decades through culture-jamming and postmodern art, especially street art, their association with honest consumer feedback began to develop more recently in early 2011, with Cracked’s Honest Movie Posters compilation in March, followed by Swedish graphic designer Viktor Hertz’ “Honest Logos” series series in April (shown below).
Honest Slogans remained relatively unnoticed until October 14th, 2013, when Clif posted an Imgur link to the /r/funny subreddit of his slogan for Hot Pockets along with a watermark accrediting his website (shown below). Within 24 hours, the post gained over 21,200 upvotes and 497 comments. On October 23rd, The Huffington Post made Dickens a contributor to the site where he posted 26 examples of his Honest Slogans.
Adweek published an article on October 22nd featuring content from the Honest Slogans website. A week later, on October 29th, Business Insider published an interview with Honest Slogans creator Clif Dickens. Dickens appeared on The Today Show Australia on November 10th to discuss his site and the inspiration for the Honest Slogans project. The same day, Gizmodo published an article featuring a sample of Honest Slogans. On November 11th, the design blog Abduzeedo also posted an article sharing many of Clif’s Honest Slogans. On January 28th, 2014, Redditor BieverLord submitted an Imgur compilation of images from the site to /r/funny, gathering more than 37,900 upvotes and 1,900 comments in the first month. In the coming days, compilations of Honest Slogans images were posted on BuzzFeed and College Humor.
The Huffington Post – 26 Slogans That Frankly Make More Sense Than the Real Ones