‘Got Milk?’ Pulls PMS Campaign Early, Yet Calls It a Success

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The California Milk Processor Board is scrapping its controversial "Got milk?" ads positioning the product as a cure-all for PMS symptoms (and the raging, irrational creatures who exhibit them). This was the logical step for a campaign that had been largely panned—it's a wonder it lasted this long, frankly. Yet both client and agency are tying themselves in knots trying to portray the effort as a success overall. Steve James, the milk board's executive director, tells The New York Times: "It certainly wasn't our intention to offend people. We regret that. No question, with some people we have stepped over the line. We certainly misjudged the heat generated by the people who thought we stepped over the line." (Great last sentence.) But taking down the website (it was supposed to remain up through August) is "not a failure in any way," James adds. "I don't see it as ending it or pulling the plug. We accomplished what we set out to accomplish." Jeff Goodby of the milk board's longtime agency, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, says he was surprised by the outcry against the campaign. "It's certainly more controversial than we expected it to be," he says. "After three days, this thing was off the hook." Still, he adds, "we think it's served its purpose." The original website, EverythingIDoIsWrong.org, now redirects to GotDiscussion.org, which, to its credit, links out to many of the negative pieces (incuding ours) written about the campaign. See the ads after the jump.

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.