Web Stories Saturday, February 24

Three male smokers in the video agreed to do so and were each gifted with an Aura smart air purifier to take home.

The video has attracted significant attention online since it was posted on Jan 8, getting more then 400,000 views and 500 comments across Facebook, Instagram and TikTok as of Monday (Jan 15) afternoon.

Many viewers claimed that the video had inadvertently given people an incentive to start smoking as opposed to discouraging it.

One Facebook user commented: “I am going to pick (up) smoking in order to quit to get the free air purifier.”

Another user pointed out: “This is more like rewarding smokers.”

Others expressed scepticism that the smokers featured in the video would really turn over a new leaf after receiving the free gift.

One viewer wrote: “Plot twist: He went to 7-11 and bought a new pack of cigarettes while holding his new air purifier.”

Another person predicted: “They will just buy another (pack) later. Already got a free purifier, (they) can even sell the purifier for at least S$80-90 on Carousell. Can buy about 5 packs (with that money).”

One other comment went: “This won’t help to quit smoking but (is) just a marketing stunt.”

Some viewers questioned if the smokers in the video were paid actors, while a handful found the woman’s actions of spraying water on the cigarettes rather “rude”.

One comment read: “I am not into smoking. However, I found (the ad) rude and crossed the line… If suddenly someone sprays water on the cigarette, the feeling is like a non-coffee drinker pouring vinegar into my coffee or a vegan (splashing) blood onto a restaurant door.” 

A number of viewers, however, liked the ad and praised it as “good marketing”.

An Instagram user said: “Love the message that you guys are sending.”

This is not the first time that an adverstisement by Prism+ has come under question.

In December last year, the company’s ad for its Zero Smart air-conditioner was nixed over greenwashing claims and deemed “not acceptable” by Singapore’s advertising standards watchdog.

TODAY has reached out to Prism+ for comment.

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