Fig. 1. End of Year 2012 Ante-smoking TV commercial and campaign
If you find the current anti-smoking ads powerful, in which a cigarette grows a life-like tumour as it is smoked, then imagine what the word 'disembowel' conjures up?
I do not suggest that you Google the word as I did wanting to correct my spelling 'disembowl' - which, if correctly defined might mean nothing more challenging that taking a bowl out of a cupboard, or away from a child who is playing with their breakfast.
I deliberately offer neither a link, nor an image.
It shocked me that even I could so naively stumble upon a gallery of such horrific proportions that includes CCTV footage of road accidents and the aftermath of murders, killings and war zone collateral damage. I am now forever damaged. My mind will run amok with these images forever - to scrub them would require cognitive behaviour therapy and hypnosis.
If I ever need to put my teenage children off the idea of riding on a motorbike, or getting a motorbike of their own I know what Google search will will put them off, potentially keep them off a pedal bike too. I've now seen what happens when a truck hits a stationary motorbike that is waiting to take, in this instance, a left turn off the main road.
I believe in the power of images - for advertising and for learning purposes.
I believe that the more genuine the image, however contrived and constructed, in its appropriate context - the more memorable the facts, events and circumstances are as a force to inform or educate. I believe also that where this image is animated, live or as live video, with both visual and auditory clues, the more powerful it becomes.
The police don't show reconstructions of traffic accidents to drunk or reckless drivers - they show them the real thing.