Are we being Greenwashed?

The BBC has a very interesting opinion piece from Rebecca Swift, the Director of Creative Planning at Getty Images. She’s written about the recent trends in advertising for businesses to make their products appear more environmentally friendly by using green images.

As a company that generates imagery for the news wires and the world of advertising, we could not help but notice a global shift in interest towards “green” iconography.

Photography has its fashions like everything else, but once in a while something “mega” comes along that touches nearly everything we see.

As we all go about our daily business we probably don’t give it much thought, but after observing what is being transmitted over days, weeks and months, a trend starts to appear.

Our research team spent a year wading through all commercial imagery from around the world relating to the environment. We found that, in relation to what companies say they are doing versus what they doing, there has been a great deal of “greenwashing”.

The fascinating thing is how many ads actually recycle the same narrow range of the colour green in an attempt to raise their eco-profile.

I’ve noticed this trend and it’s been going on for quite a while. I always wonder how environmentally friendly these companies are. My inherent  scepticism suggests that most of these adverts are just paying lip-service to a passing fad.

Rebecca makes some interesting points about the use of colours in previous advertising campaigns, which as an amateur photographer I find rather interesting.

Eventually this green fad will die off and another colour will take its place. Which colour that is will depend on the current hot topic. I hope it’s black!

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