Moscow courier service campaign creates a stir online

Ad campaign for Delivery Club featuring Natalia Andreeva, who used to be a TV reporter. Image copyright Delivery Club
Image caption Natalia Andreeva quit her TV career for her well-being, and to earn more money

Do you pay attention to the person who delivers your food, and would it make a difference if you knew them?

In Moscow, a company called Delivery Club has launched an advertising campaign around the city, and across Russian-language Twitter, filled with photos and personal details of some of their workers.

One example says food will be delivered by "a literature teacher, Abdisattar, who's interested in mountain hiking and is raising three children."

Other workers include a member of a writers' union who has five daughters, a woman who hopes to climb Mount Everest and a man who speaks nine languages.

There has been mixed reaction on social media.

As one Russian news outlet points out, a former news reporter has switched to working for the courier service and is now earning more than she did on television.

According to the article, state controlled Channel One have asked Natalia Andreeva to come back to them, but she has said no. Instead, she is happy to set her own hours of work.

One Twitter user laments that this has become "commonplace".

"This is not an idea worth criticising, but a reality surrounding us", the tweet reads.

Another criticises the company for inciting pity, shame and bitterness, referring to a "distinguished Russian artist in his old age forced to deliver food to drunk teenagers."

Some appreciate the personal touch to the adverts, but one user said the adverts could be seen as demonstrating "only outcasts work in delivery", when the reality is the couriers are "working to survive."

A spokesperson for Mail.ru, which owns Delivery Club, has explained the thinking behind the campaign in a Facebook post saying: "We wanted to show the workers as real people, not models or actors."

Image copyright Delivery Club
Image caption This poster says "Your order will be delivered by a football fan. He loves Bollywood movies and Russian music"

Not everyone has criticised the adverts. Some say people should be happy delivery workers earn more than reporters and teachers.

One Facebook user was pleased the campaign "destroys snobbish stereotypes and exposes social problems."

Some people have seen the funny side, and created their own adverts featuring potential couriers, like this Game of Thrones fan who writes: "Daenarys is interested in fire and raising one child".