Foul-mouthed campaign cops backlash
A tongue-in-cheek tourism campaign urging Melburnians to stop breaching lockdown laws and travelling into regional Victoria has gone viral.
But the reaction has been mixed, with the "Do Not Visit Victoria" series of postcards applauded by some regional townships and criticised by others.
Footscray-based associate creative director Jesse Wheeler created the postcards with a staple image of a popular Victorian tourism destination and a punchline caption urging Melburnians to stay away.
"It took off so quickly," Mr Wheeler said.
"We were inundated by almost every regional town wanting their own postcode and then we got hit with requests about making shirts and tea towels."
But Mr Wheeler said he had received complaints about his personal project.
"I've had a couple of mayors from some of the regional areas on the phone who got upset about it. They said they still wanted visitors to come, just not from Melbourne at the moment.
"But this is what the campaign is about. It's directed at people from Melbourne breaching lockdown and going into regional areas that don't have the infrastructure to cope if there was an outbreak."
Mr Wheeler created the campaign with fellow collaborator Guillermo Carvajal.
He said they "just spitballed ideas" before forming the series of quirky postcards.
"We're not saying Melburnians shouldn't visit these areas at all," Mr Wheeler said.
"After lockdown we should all support tourism in regional Victoria as much as possible, but the campaign is just to get the message across with a bit of humour.
"We've got to have a bit of a laugh in these dark times."
Due to popular demand for merchandise, Mr Wheeler set up an online store with the money raised set to be donated to charity.
Victoria announced a further 238 infections on Wednesday, while three more people died from coronavirus overnight.
Police in Victoria have fined 63 individuals in the past 24 hours, while 40 infringement notices in the past week have been handed to people visiting massage parlours.
Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Rick Nugent said partying continues to be a concern after authorities shut down a party in Melbourne's CBD where nearly $60,000 in fines was handed out.
Originally published as Foul-mouthed campaign cops backlash