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Reddit’s 5-Second Super Bowl LV Ad, Explained
There is an undeniable issue when it comes to wealth distribution in America. And in the past few weeks, a legion of Reddit users in the r/wallstreetbets subreddit proved that while the odds may be against the little guy, a lot of little guys can change an institution. Cut to: all of us talking about Game Stop for the first time since high school and learning what a “short squeeze” means. Reddit took note of its users’ accomplishments, and took a five second ad out to honor its passionate base. The truncated commercial is probably the shortest to air this Super Bowl season, but its impact is undeniable.
Kicking off with a pair of racing SUVs, the ad cuts to a screen with Reddit’s signature orange and white color scheme. The company featured a long message that is nearly impossible to read in five seconds. It reads:
If you’re reading this, it means our bet paid off.Big game spots are expensive, so we couldn’t buy a full one. But we were inspired and decided to spend our entire marketing budget on 5 seconds of airtime. One thing we learned from our communities last week is that underdogs can accomplish just about anything when they come together around a common idea.Who knows, maybe you’ll be the reason finance textbooks have to add a chapter on “tendies.” Maybe you’ll help r/SuperbOwl teach the world about the majesty of owls. Maybe you’ll even pause this 5-second ad.Powerful things happen when people rally around something they really care about. And there’s a place for that. It’s called Reddit.
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Granted, it’s worth noting that Reddit is valued at approximately three billion dollars, so it’s hard to imagine that the internet staple doesn’t have the money for a longer spot. That said, the 5-second blip is a powerful one that speaks to Reddit’s whole M.O. While Facebook has folded in every feature imaginable and Twitter continues to reimagine its layout, Reddit has largely stayed true to its original form: a crude format where the content featured prominently is the content that is prioritized by its users.
In a world where social media is nothing but a headache, here’s to the OG that keeps it simple. Oh, and the fact that its users remain a thorn in Wall Street is, of course, a bonus.
Justin Kirkland is a writer for Esquire, where he focuses on entertainment, television, and pop culture.
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