Following a litany of complaints, PepsiCo has pulled a :60 Mountain Dew commercial that social commentator Dr. Boyce Watkins dubbed, "arguably the most racist commercial in history."
The ad, indeed, carries racist overtones with a white women -- who appears to have been assaulted -- attempting to identify her assailant from a lineup of black men...and a talking goat who urges her not to spill the beans with various threats.
An ad campaign created by an Indian agency for Ford has come under fire for its creative approach. Three ads, which tout the brand's Indian-made Ford Figo, feature cartoon characatures of women (and men) bound and gagged in the vehicle's trunk.
Ford has issued an apology which, in part, reads, "We deeply regret the publishing of posters that were distasteful and contrary to the standards of professionalism and decency within WPP Group. These were never intended for paid publication and should never have been created, let alone uploaded to the internet. This was the result of individuals acting without proper oversight and appropriate actions have been taken within the agency."
This guest post on the topic of Do Not Track is written by Tim Stoute, Co-CEO & CTO of Toronto-based eyeReturn.
Online advertising is appealing because it is effective and measurable. The "Ad Tech" industry is a competitive and innovative space, where disruptive new techniques are frequently introduced to provide advertisers new tools, reports, and efficiencies for their advertising dollars. One of these new technologies is behavioral advertising. Behavioral advertising allows online systems to classify web-surfing habits and target specific advertisements based on the classification - this, as you know, makes the advertising more efficient for the advertiser, and more relevant to the end user.
While behavioral advertising is both anonymous and a benefit to all parties, some people perceive the practice as intrusive and infringing on user privacy. Recognizing these concerns, the online advertising industry has worked together to form standards, regulations and opt-out systems. One of these standards is called Do Not Track (DNT).
Much of what we see on reality shows is a sad representation of the human race, or at minimum, the sliver who doesn't mind their inner most idiocy broadcast to the world. MTV's The Valleys is no exception. But we're not here to debate the finer points of reality TV programming. We're here to share with you an MTV UK ad promoting the network's The Valleys.
This past April, we highlighted some typically twisted car dealer advertising from Cosby, Texas-based John Keating Chevrolet. The dealership is owned by Rick Melartin who, in the ads, referred to himself as The Finnisher (he's from Finland and competed in the Olympics) because he caught three robbers at gunpoint over the course of 15 years.
The ads are, indeed, strange but he was hailed locally as a hero for his neighborhood protection efforts. That, however, may no longer be the case. Melartin, 51, and his assistant, 37-year-old Maroun Koutani have been accused of plying a 16-year-old female employee, the dealership's receptionist, with alcohol and sexually fondling her in a dealership office.
In what is both hilarious (old people swearing) and utterly lame (poor copywriting and direction), Michael Moore taps the Greatest Generation to advocate for Obama. In a nursing home scenario, five old farts peer into the camera and tell us why we should vote...and vote for Obama. The work comes from MoveOn.org and its Voters Rising effort.
In an appearance far less awkward and devoid of empty chairs, Clint Eastwood appears in an American Crossroads ad touting Governor Mitt Romney for President. In the ad, Eastwood says, "Obama's second term would be a rerun of the first, and our country just couldn't survive that. We need someone who could turn it around fast, and that man is Mitt Romney. There's not much time left, and the future of our country is at stake."
- One million moms get panties in a bunch, protest Ragu commercial.
- This just in! Men favor computers over television for entertainment. Um, yea. That's where the porn is!
- Why online video remains in TV's shadow.
- Why social media agencies are a farce.
- Taylor Swift gets all dolled up for Wonderstruck Enchanted Fragrance.
- Olympic super hero Michaels Phelps can be seen lounging in a bathtub for a new Louis Vuitton campaign.
While no official word has handed down by the International Olympic Committee regarding Michael Phelps' appearance in leaked photos of a Louis Vuitton ad inside the Rule 40 window barring appearance in non-Olympic sponsor ads between July 17 and August 15, the media has its panties in a bunch over the kerfuffle.
The ads, shot by Annie Liebowitz, feature Phelps in a bathtub wearing a Speedo and swim goggles and on a couch sitting next to Russian Olympian Larissa Latynina whose medal winning record Phelps just broke.
This Olympics-focused editorial series is written by Ronald Urbach, Chairman of law firm Davis & Gilbert LLP and the co-chair of the Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Practice Group at the firm.
Much of what we hear as we read the reports of the Olympics is: how many medals? It appears that the media is compelled to quantify success, sort of like an Olympic box score. Is the US leading in the total medal count? Is the US leading in gold medals? How many medals does China have? Will Great Britain, the host country, finally begin to rack up the medals? As I write this article, the US is leading in total overall medals, though not in gold. Great Britain is coming on strong - now in third, and Andy Murray beat Roger Federer for the coveted gold in men's tennis.
But to advertisers and agencies, the medal count pales next to the critical question - who will be the breakout advertising spokesperson of the 2012 Olympics? Will anyone rise to the level of a true advertising superstar?