Photographer Claims BBDO Athens Copied Work For Dexim Ad


Old friend The Reverse Cowgirl points to yet another example of an ad agency's use of an artist's work without obtaining permission or providing credit. Writing on Constant Siege, Clayton Cubitt claims BBDO Athens created a direct rip off of photographer Jamie Nelson's work for an ad they did for Dexim. The photo used in the BBDO-created Dexim ad bears a striking resemblance to a photo Nelson took in 2006 and had published on the cover of July/August 2007 issue of Blink.

When contacted, Nelson provided Adrants with an armful of information supporting the notion BBDO Athens did, in fact, closely copy her work. BBDO Athens has been contacted but they have not yet responded. Likely BBDO Athens fully intended to mirror Nelson's work but somehow the permission process was mistakenly overlooked. I'll reserve final judgment until I've made contact with BBDO Athens to hear their side of the story.

UPDATE: We mis-reported (bad source information) the agency in question was BBDO Atlanta. It is actually BBDO Athens. Thanks to Atlanta-based Brent Terrazas for pointing out the error.

by Steve Hall    Aug-29-08   Click to Comment   
Topic: Agencies, Bad, Policy   

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Hey Steve: What do you mean, "a striking resemblance"? The identical pattern in both backgrounds does not run in the same direction, there are no red shoes in Jamie Nelson's image, those are clearly two different shades of lipstick, and the hammers face different directions! Also, Nelson's model is looking like "I want you," where the Dexim model is more, "I made these shoes with my hammer." The two images could hardly be more dissimilar....

Posted by: Roger Darnell on August 29, 2008 1:47 PM

This was summed up very well by "Note to art directors and art buyers: photographers like being your inspiration. That's why we do this. So when you're inspired by our work, just contact us, you might be surprised how inexpensive we can make images available to you, or even re-shoot with you in mind."

Come'on BBDO! This is a blatant rip off. They took this photo and had it on set, did a total copy of it and then had the nerves to claim "creative direction" and "art direction" because they can do a 100% rip off of someone's photo. They should be embarrassed with themselves!

Posted by: DeLancey on August 29, 2008 2:31 PM

Well that does it, Steve. If I can't count on AdRants to provide me with the correct information, I'm just going to have to turn to Fox News. Now if you'll kindly refund my money, I'll be on my way.

Posted by: M.M.McDermott on August 29, 2008 2:57 PM


Please expect a refund of your annual $0.00 Adrants subscription fee in your PayPal account withing the hour:-)

Posted by: Steve Hall on August 29, 2008 3:00 PM

Please to be depositing American moneys in my account of South Africa, sir. As a wealthy rich businessman from Zimbabwe, I am been forced to moving my family to safety. I will pay you large sums of currency to help me in the endeavour to find country shelter.

Sorry, Just a little spam humor.

Posted by: M.M.McDermott on August 29, 2008 3:09 PM