Telefonica subsidizes phone bills for layoff victims

Telefonica in Spain has introduced a crisis promotion: People who have lost a job will get a 50 percent rebate on their telephone bill (up to a maximum of €20 a month). The commercial that announces the promotion is a hymn to the phone as a networking tool—a man loses his job in the morning, and thanks to his friends’ phone calls, he has a new job by nightfall.

Along with Coca Cola’s recent commercial, this is another entry in a Spanish album of the crisis.

The problem with the spot, however, is that all the people making calls to help their friend are paying the full rate. Telefonica comes off looking a little patronizing, and more concerned about fulfilling its brand image as a leader in communications than promoting the rebate.

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