HIV Shock Campaign Wimbledon Star's AIDS Prevention Campaign Provokes

Earlier, German Wimbledon champion Michael Stich fought for victory on the tennis court, but today he is campaigning to prevent children from contracting the HIV virus. However, he has shocked people with a new ad campaign that features explicit photographs of simulated sexual acts.


The image shows a blonde-haired woman wearing nothing but black knickers and high heels. She is kneeling in front of a naked man while performing simulated fellatio with a gun. The poster reads: "Only 0.003 millimeters of latex lie between life and death."

The aim of the campaign, created for the Michael Stich Foundation, which is headed by the 1991 Wimbledon champion, is to increase public interest in HIV and AIDS in Germany. Stich's organization provides direct assistance to children who are infected or ill with HIV or AIDS and also funds awareness campaigns aimed at stopping infections. The organization has also supported a nation-wide government project to teach about the risks of HIV transmission at schools across Germany.

Each of the seven images in the new campaign, created by the German advertising agency Jung von Matt, carries a warning about the dangers of the virus. One image shows a portrait of a baby against a stark white backdrop with the slogan: "Granddad's chin. Dad's eyes. Mom's HIV." Another show's a woman's breasts and carries the message that HIV can also be spread through mother's milk.

The campaign has drawn criticism, including that of readers of our German sister site at SPIEGEL ONLINE. Readers sent letters criticizing the images as sexist and providing a negative portrayal of women. Filipe Welter Ribeiro wrote: "Why is it the mother's fault that the child has AIDS?" Tanja Honnerlage wrote that it creates the impression that "it's only women who don't think about safer sex."

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