Is this advert belittling the work of designers?

South West trains advert

Click the image to head to SW Trains twitter page to see the enlarged version
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South West Trains (opens in new tab) has just released a new campaign, with the banner ad heading up its Twitter page. Reading, '1,400 extra car parking spaces (more helpful than changing the shade of all our trains),' designer Andy Hau (opens in new tab) found the advert to be belittling of designers.

He told us, "I understand that South West Trains want to talk about the improvements they've made to their service but that's no reason to belittle the service we provide as designers. Designers bring a lot of value through their work and to classify what we do as 'unimportant' is damaging, irresponsible and ignorant.

"In a world where $5 logos and off-the-peg design are becoming the norm, South West trains compounds the misbelief that designers and design are a frivolous commodity – an afterthought to make something a little bit more interesting. I'm all for humour and laughing at ourselves but South West Trains new campaign just comes across as mean-spirited and uniformed."

What do you think? Let us know in the comments.

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Sammy Maine

Sammy Maine was a founding member of the Creative Bloq team way back in the early 2010s, working as a Commissioning Editor. Her interests cover graphic design in music and film, illustration and animation. Since departing, Sammy has written for The Guardian, VICE, The Independent & Metro, and currently co-edits the quarterly music journal Gold Flake Paint.