Puma Ads: Not For the Squeamish
So here they are. At first, these ads were thought to be real. To have run in Maxim magazine in Brazil (see below). Then, it was thought to be a viral stunt by PUMA itself. Then, it became known that PUMA had nothing to do with them and that they were just created by someone to have some fun. They are, in fact, fake ads.
A little chronology:
(1/8/06: A lot of these links are broken because they are external and it's been almost three years since the story originally broke. Sorry.)
3. PUMA makes this statement after catching wind of the whole thing:
"It has been brought to our attention that several unauthorized, sexually suggestive advertisements portraying the PUMA brand have been released over the Internet. We are appalled that images like these would be created and distributed under the PUMA name. As a brand, we seek to take a unique perspective toward our advertising in an effort to challenge the boundaries of our industry; however we would never consider using these tactics. We are in the process of researching the circumstances and reserve any legal steps available."
5. PUMA sends out Cease and Desist letters to many bloggers.
6. I respond to the Cease and Desist.
7. Gawker responds to the Cease and Desist.
8. A nice summary of the whole thing from Felix Salmon.
9. Gawker offers to organize legal defense for anyone served with cease and desist letters.