By Silvija Daniunaite
The University of Groningen battles Amsterdam’s provocation with humor.
The newest advertising campaign for the upcoming master’s day on November 11th, 2017 released by the University of Amsterdam (UvA) has sparked quite a bit of controversy in The Netherlands, especially so in the small city of Groningen.
Seeking to attract more students from all over the country, the university released a series of posters with parodies of competitor slogans. UvA’s posters now hang in Leiden, Utrecht, Tilburg, Amsterdam, and Groningen, where major Dutch universities are based.
Following the release of the posters, the University of Groningen (RUG) was quick to respond to UvA’s attack via a sarcastic Twitter exchange, igniting a friendly feud between the two universities.
UvA changed Groningen’s original slogan–“Nothing goes above Groningen”– into “Something goes above Groningen,” placing the poster all over the city.
“Before, we always had a general slogan for the master’s day in other cities,” said a spokesman of UvA to Folia. “We hope these slogans are better picked up by the students,” he further added, explaining the reason behind such a bold advertising campaign.
Dr Tammo H. A. Bijmolt, the head of the Marketing department at RUG, believes that such a campaign will in fact benefit Groningen rather the UvA itself.
“We should thank them for the additional attention they draw [to] Groningen,” he told The Scoop.
The university didn’t take UvA’s actions to heart, said Jorien Bakker, the spokesperson of RUG, claiming that such campaigns are considered normal in all universities.
“Of course, [UvA’s] campaign was a bit brutal and straightforward, but we decided to respond with a humorous twist.”