You Are Germany! Du Bist Deutschland!

Du Bist Deutschland...Sig Heil!

The blogging world is all excited by the latest slogan for promoting Germany - "Du Bist Deutschland" ("You Are Germany"). Which unfortunately was also a Nazi propaganda slogan. The genius behind it, Jean-Remy von Matt, heads up a P.R./Marketing mob called Jung Von Matt. Here's a translation of what he said to explain himself and why the bloggers are pissed off.

My mother taught me to say thanks for a present, even if you have no use for it. I only just realized again how right she was.
Two weeks ago, "You are Germany" ("Du bist Deutschland") was launched, the biggest non-profit campaign of all times and a huge present.

The big publishers made a 35 Million Euro gift of time and space. 30 a-list celebrities gave their time and their faces. We and kempertrautmann gave our time and our hearts.

The aim: to fight grumpyness.

"You are Germany"

The thanks: grumpyness. Which, fortunately, came only from the groups you wouldn't expect anything else from:

1. Our fellow advertisers, busily piping up in trade journals. Many of them find the campaign useless, "because advertising cannot be the adequate way to economically push a nation forward". It is really sad that our trade doesn't believe in the power of communication any more.

2. Weblogs, the toilet walls of the internet. (What on earth gives every computer owner the right to exude their opinion, unasked for? And most bloggers really just exude. This new, lowest level of opinion-forming becomes evident when you search for "Du bist Deutschland" on

3. Intellectual Journalists from Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung to Die Tageszeitung who do exude their opinion "asked for" in so far as they have verifiable readers, but: "The campaign reaches its cynical peak in the spot showing gay and disabled people on the holocaust memorial in Berlin" (Die Zeit).
Tough luck to have so much on your mind that you completely lose your gut feeling.

By the way: Sebastian Thurner finds the campaign simply wrong.

Wrong, what is that? Even after watching it fifty times I still feel touched, even moved - although I am not even German.

Can that be wrong?

Yours, Jean-Remy

Well mate...if you wanna go down that path, why not just resuscitate "Deutschland Uber Alles" and be done with it - "Germany Above All Others". And stamp it with a swastika if you really want to brand it.

This guy's copping heaps of flak BTW.
"You are Germany" Jean-Remy (a Belgian) you are a complete dumkopf.

AnonymousCoward's picture
Dabitch's picture

When I first spotted the campaign (it aired already in September last year), and it's bland visuals - an eye, a face, a couple - I was going to write about it as advertising to make people happier and less grumpy was an odd move right there. And anything even close to national pride for Germany was iffy just because of their history. But the worst part was how bland and boring it was.
But then something shiny caught my eye and I forgot. See, toldya. Boring.

Now this, wow. It's almost exactly what the doctor ordered if they wanted to get som attention, really. See the image in Der Spiegel (and if you read German, read more there).
Some discussion was going on at .slanted typoblog last year and plenty more German language places if anyon is keen to read.
At Indymedia they've had some fun with the logo by the way. ;)

malkie66's picture

I must point out that the original 1935 slogan was "denn du bist Deutschland" - "'cause you are Germany" and the "explanation" of Jean-Remy's is actually an email he sent to colleagues that "somehow" was passed on and has been doing the rounds of the blogosphere. He went on later to retract the "toilet walls" comment. Meanwhile parody sites are popping up riffing on the "toilet walls".

suture's picture

What's also interesting with Jean-Remy is that his agency, Jung von Matt, brought on Peter Kabel - a money bag from the internet bubble a while ago. With his "toilet wall" comment Jean-Remy isn't helping promote that new division, Jung von Matt/Next, that Kabel is trying to gain traction with. Shows how serious he takes user generated content scene.

AnonymousCoward's picture

"What on earth gives every computer owner the right to exude their opinion, unasked for?"

Gee, that sounds kinda Nazi.