As you have read above what I am going to discuss so let’s come straight to that.

Nowadays, advertising has become compulsory for every new product launched because the competition is so tough now that it is must to do that to survive.

Even some large brands even go for sponsorships to get the light and attention and we all know that sometimes advertisement goes to such an extent that you cannot control but to laugh……As in the case of deodorants especially, a moment you spray it and you are surrounded with gorgeous girls and I assume that you had never bought that especially for this reason I mentioned.

“Promise, large promise is the soul of an advertisement”

-Samuel Johnson

Yeah, it’s true

It is the soul of an ad, after all, it’s all about marketing you know, but sometimes the advertisements also land in controversies due to their content as it leads to misleading message or something that is objectionable.

So let’s now have a look over that…


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The sportswear company Reebok was involved in controversies due to its 2012 poster and ad campaign in Germany following the complaints about its slogan.

The slogan was…

Cheat on your girlfriend, not on your workout”

The poster which ran at gym affiliated with the brand in Germany was intended to motivate.

The company, later on, acknowledged that it was offensive. Even though the advertisement was not part of the global campaign but thanks to social media, the reaction had been global.


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This time it was related to racism that followed the company in its advertising campaign with an aim to target its followers in the middle east, it recently promoted its deodorant with an ad featuring a woman in a white robe with her back to the camera.

The slogan at the bottom of ad was….

“White is Purity”

This was considered offensive across the globe and the commercial was branded, a racist. Nivea parent company, Beiersdorf Global AG, had to issue an apology soon after.


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The another controversy comes from the Italy-based company Dolce and Gabbana, back in 2007 fashion house known as D&G received a backlash for the ad that featured a woman being restrained by a shirtless man while surrounded by other half-dressed man.

The ad was banned both in Spain and Italy as it offended the dignity of the woman. The ad was also banned because of the helpless position of the woman related to the men around her which represent and spread violence.

4.) FORD

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This Ad was banned too because of the charge of degrading the woman but this time it was from the FORD, one of the big automaker American based companies.

The ad in which the former Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi is shown with a bunch of gagged and crying women in the trunk of his car and this ad also came during that period in which there were several protests against the gang rapes.

While this act was not meant for circulation and was submitted for a competition, the backlash forced a top executive from the firm to step down.


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This time it was one of the largest beverages company, PepsiCo who was involved for an advertisement conveying a misleading message on society as it was related to racism.

Just one day after its release a Pepsi ad featuring Kendall Jenner was pulled following heavy criticism. The company issued an apology and pulled an advertisement that received backlash for trivialising racism.

“Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace and understanding.”

They accept that clearly they missed the mark and apologize for this.



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Another one of the popular brands ads which were withdrawn following criticism for their content was American Apparel, which is regularly blasted for its sexy advertisements featuring nude or nearly nude women in suggestive positions.

The ads were criticized by UK advertising standards authority because the women in the ad were vulnerable and in sexually provocative poses.


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One of the largest fashion brands, Sisley was also involved in controversies because of its ad campaign back in 2007 featuring two women who were snorting a shirt with the caption fashion junkie.

The brand wants to convey that just like a drug addict the women were addicted to new fashion apparels but there is a line between a drug addict and a fashion lover that Sisley crossed and was withdrawn following a criticism.


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The ban on the advertisement does not just end up for brands and companies even the movie ads are not safe to critics and can also be banned by advertising watchdogs.

The movie which was involved in controversy was the original poster of 2002 comedy movie “The Rules of Attraction” which featured various stuffed animals in suggestive positions which were quickly banned.

We are also often familiar to the common phrase that ad is not bad but I am sure now after reading this your perception is changed.


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Thanks for reading!

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