Posts Tagged ‘advertising f*** up of the year’

oh-really

 

It’s been awhile since we had a really good F*** Up to share, and we can feel your nervous anticipation, Dear Reader, so here is a new one for you. Ta-da!

 

cock flavour soup mix

 

Quality since 1922 indeed. We think that means since twenty past seven last night.

Believe it or not, this was seen on a BRITISH supermarket shelf by our eagle-eyed correspondent. Amazing.

As for which market segment might go hunting for this particular item, let us just say that our lips are sealed.

neuro-blissMeanwhile, I am not the only blogger driven nuts by the stupidities of packaging. The Flaklist kindly found this beauty.

As he says:

Oh good, my years of waiting have finally paid off.  At last, there’s a drink on the market that has married the shapely form of a butt plug with the distinctive colouration of a used condom.  That’s just what I’ve always said would make a beverage look irresistibly appetising.  Brilliant.

And you thought we are harsh!

Flaklist also takes aim at a series of packaging ephemera from Sainsbury’s in the UK.

Along the lines of health warnings like “Contains Nuts” being on a clear-wrap packet of peanuts, he bemoans the idiot extra comments advertising writers put on packaging in case we don’t, just, you know, get the point.

This is my favourite. Yes, when in doubt, say more. And more and more and more.

 

fruity

 

Refreshing and fruity.

Fruity (adjective) – having the taste or smell of fruit.

Raspberry (noun) – a type of fruit.

Incontrovertible (adjective) – using the term ‘fruity’ to describe a fucking fruit.

Junior marketing managers approving packaging detail, please note.

"You know what, Jean? it's just ... just ... something's nagging at me ..."

“You know what, Jean? It’s just … just … something’s nagging at me …”

At the Wellthisiswhatithink coalface we are in a very generous mood today. It’s been a wonderful weekend, and we return to the keyboard full of the joys of Spring, and pleased to report that the little pump in the newly installed goldfish pond is working, thanks to the loving care and persistence of Mrs Wellthisiswhatithink when yours truly was more than happy to chuck the damn thing in the bin. Little tea lights now hang in the cherry tree over the new pond, and all the wonderful dark purple petunias have taken. It looks like a good crop of apricots this year too, thanks to excellent rain.

In short, all is good in the Wellthisiswhatithink paddock.

So, wiping out Lord knows how many future posts with complete abandon, we are chucking caution to the winds and are going to give you a whole bunch of advertising and layout F*** Ups, just to start the week off right.

We can’t believe how they just keep on coming. And thank you so much, Simon, for these.

Always remember, Dear Reader, all donations gratefully received.

Meanwhile, publishers, try and get your sub editors, journalists and advertising departments to talk to each other, you lazy buggers.

On the other hand, thanks for the laughs.

 

I've always had my suspicions about Winnie. Far too bloody nice,

I’ve always had my suspicions about Winnie. Far too bloody nice.

 

We are reasonably sure one was involved at some point, but do you have to rub it in. So to speak?

We are reasonably sure one was involved at some point, but do you have to rub it in. So to speak? No-one saw this? Really? Sheesh.

 

Or this? Poor girl. Her mother will be delighted.

Or this? Poor girl. Her mother will be delighted.

 

Memo to Russian newspaper. You have to put the photos in, not just the placeholders. Wonderful stuff, new technology, eh, Boris?

Memo to Russian newspaper. You have to put the photos in, not just the placeholders. Wonderful stuff, new technology, eh, Boris?

 

The dangers of asking your idiot ad agency for "web ready copy".

The dangers of asking your idiot ad agency for “web ready copy”.

 

She's very tolerant, obviously. How to take the gloss off a Royal Wedding.

She’s very tolerant, obviously. How to take the gloss off a Royal Wedding.

 

Hooray! Duck!

Hooray! And, er. Duck!

 

Yes, well. What else could one say?

Yes, well. What else could one say?

 

Sometimes, you even have to worry about how the article will stack in the dispense box.

Sometimes, you even have to worry about how the article will stack in the dispenser box.

 

We finish with our two favourites. This magnificent cover fail reveals, when read carefully, the importance of those little things like commas.

We finish with our two favourites. This magnificent cover fail reveals, when read carefully, the importance of those little things like commas. Little wonder Rachael looks so healthy with such a diverse diet. We think “Tails” magazine should be renamed “Fails”.

 

And last but not least, the power of the Leading Cap. I think you can discern the sub editor's view of these departing journos quite clearly.

And last but not least, the power of the Leading Cap. I think you can discern the sub editor’s view of these departing journos quite clearly.

 

More soon. Meanwhile, which is your favourite of this crop?

If you want to check out the whole history of the F*** Ups, try these:

The other F*** Ups we’ve spotted, if you missed ‘em.

Where words fail. Entirely. And wonderfully: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-H7

Naughty schoolgirls celebrated by Headmistress: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-zy

The world’s stupidest billboard placement: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-gX

Not the holiday anyone would really want: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-hJ

Two for the price of one: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-13P

Stores abusing innocent shoppers: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-j8

The most embarrassingly badly worded headline in history: http://tinyurl.com/7enukvd

Oh, those crazy whacky country McDonalds eaters: http://tinyurl.com/83vgpng

And a burger we think we KNOW you’re not going to want to eat. http://wp.me/p1LY0z-14r

The amazingly handy father: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-vM

When Boy Scouts go bad: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-1lC

What you really didn’t need to know about your chef: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-1Co

Enjoy! Please feel free to share.

crab.jpg

Ok, you know what the guy writing the ad on his home computer MEANT to say. He got his clip art sorted out, his rudimentary page layout programme was working fine, and he typed and typed for all he was worth, with all those lovely different typefaces and sizes, bless him.

And then right at the last minute, just as the rep from the local newspaper was calling round, he remembered that one last vital thing he had to say, so you know what? Let’s give it a screamer pull out! Brilliant!

Oh dear.

Oh dearie dearie me.

20130920-163636.jpg

dohDoes this qualify as an Advertising F*** Up of the Year?

Maybe Sub Editing F*** Up of the Year?

Look, not, not really, but it’s just so funny I couldn’t not share it.

That was also the feeling of whoever took the photo, I guess.

Well, like so often, you know what they MEANT to say.

Well, like so often, you know what they MEANT to say.

We are now left wondering, aimlessly, what the staff looked like and whether we would want them to touch us. As it looks like some middle eastern-style carpet bazaar, I suspect not … then again, whatever floats your boat.

Meanwhile, it’s clear to see how the Asians have decided to deal with their population crisis. A bit extreme, but the price of rice is going up.

Does that come with sauce?

Does that come with sauce?

OK, this is not the most dignified way to rack up 450 posts, but there it is. I did warn everyone 18 months ago this would be a very eclectic collection of news, opinion and silliness. You’re still reading, so I guess you agree …. :-)

OK, impossible to believe, I know, but words fail me on this one. They saw NOTHING wrong with this billboard at all – none of them – the client, the agency, the regulatory authorities – no-one.

Ye Gods. For the other Advertising F*** Ups we have recorded, plus a couple of “whoa! Well done advertising!” just put the word “advertising” in the search box top left of the page, hit enter, and enjoy …

20130317-130736.jpg

Hang on, what was that number again?

 

I am most grateful to Mrs Wellthisiswhatithink for spotting this one. Does anyone know where this excruciating piece of nonsense ran?

What he said.

What he said.

OK. So this always happens. The minute I post a new Advertising F*** Up, my inbox is deluged with other examples.

What does this say about the abilities of the advertising industry worldwide, or it’s quality control levels? It says they are frequently crap, and, er, frequently crap.

Anyhow, we should be grateful for small mercies, because they are very funny and/or cringe inducing. This one falls into the category of “Oh, no, surely that was done in Photoshop, no one would really do that, right?” But as it was Mrs Wellthisiswhatithink that emailed it to me, I think it deserves a run, or I won’t get my tea.

I actually think it could be real, because what I know about the outdoor advertising industry is that it is more than capable of producing “skins” in a factory somewhere and all they are interested in is the technical accuracy of the production run, and not the creative content.

Personally, I once ran a double-page full colour ad for a client that read “Oustanding Value”. It got through our agency quality control process, the client signed off, the magazine quality control process signed off, and, indeed, had been in the public arena for half a week before anyone spotted it.

So without further ado, here is today’s contender. Further comment superfluous.

Yummy

Yummy.

D' oh!

Oh dear. A rather, er, prominent mistake.

Well, OK, technically the first one is packaging, not advertising. But, you know – same diff.

Always a good idea for the creative department designing the label to know the ink density and absorbency of the paper being used.

Once you know that, it’s all about kerning, people.

But then again, does anyone in today’s ad industry actually know what kerning is?

Hmmm?

Doesn’t the Apple just do that for me?

Mummy?

Meanwhile, Dear Reader, a quick lesson in not necessarily using every space available in this lovely world of ours for advertising, or if we do, let’s make sure the creatives actually see the site before they’re asked to beaver away at their keyboards, eh?

Take their coffee and cocaine away from them, pop some sunglasses on their precious little noses, and send them out into the real world.

Coz, see, I am reasonably sure this is not the sub-conscious image that Turkish Airlines wish to leave in the minds of their potential customers.

Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Dumb, dumb, dumb.

 

(BTW, I really can’t be arsed to post links to all the F*** Ups of 2012 – just type advertising in the search box top left and you’ll soon find them all.)

Funny thing to do because you are perfectly capable, Dear Reader, in looking round the blog yourself. But with 270 new blogs in a year that’s a lot of searching, so all the “Blogging Basics” sites say I must give you a guide that you can go look through, so here it is.

Er, nope. Never happened. Nice painting though.

Er, nope. Never happened. Nice painting though.

By far the most popular blog of the year on any one day was http://wellthisiswhatithink.wordpress.com/2012/10/01/its-official-adam-and-eve-er-werent/ which garnered nearly 5,000 hits in one day (out of an annual total of more than 77,000 in 2012) when a very senior Archbishop in the Roman Catholic Church revealed what the rest of us with brains have known forever and a day anyway, which is that Genesis is true only in the sense that is is a moral fable, and not in the sense that the world was created in 7 days, or that Eve came from Adam’s rib, or that all the horrors of the world arose from munching a forbidden apple.

The really interesting thing about this story, of course, is that theologically speaking when we allow any part of the Bible text to be considered mythological then we have no argument that any other part of the Bible might not also be mythological.

Hence, just to pick a few major ones – bye bye Noah and capturing two of every living creature on the earth (including all bacteria, all 8000 species of ants, etc.), cya later Lot offering his virgin daughters to the crowd, not to mention the fact that Joshua collapsing the walls of Jericho couldn’t have happened because archaeology reveals the place was deserted when Joshua was around. Great story – good song – historical nonsense.

It seems we will just have to do what the 19th and 20th century “modernist” or “critical” theologians wanted us to do, which is read the Bible with the benefit of modern textual analysis, studying the original languages not the translations, (which, for example, can be used to argue that the Bible actually says nothing at all about gays) and taking full advantage of archaeology when we can.

The article on Adam and Eve was also the second most popular article overall of the whole year.

I think we have more to worry about than whether a Secret Serviceman did or did not employ a prostitute. Like: HIV, violence, drug addiction, social dislocation.

I think we have more to worry about than whether a Secret Serviceman did or did not employ a prostitute. Like: HIV, violence, drug addiction, social dislocation. And more.

The most popular article for the whole year was http://wellthisiswhatithink.wordpress.com/2012/04/22/the-secret-serviceman-and-the-prostitute-whats-the-real-scandal/.

I’d like to think this was all about my thoughtful analysis of hypocrisy in American moral values, the role of prostitution in modern society, the role of the media in drumming up salacious gossip, and the relationship between poverty and the sex trade.

However checking out my stats closely I suspect it’s just because the word prostitute is often typed into search engines, and the story duly pops up.

Similar big scores have been gathered with articles about tits, and even bum.

One would despair, were it not for the fact that I know that some people read the article seriously.

Similarly, promising to ignore injunctions and show people Princess Catherine of Wales (aka Kate Middleton) topless and then bottomless worked well to drum up passing trade, though I doubt many of the people who clicked on the links got the point of my tongue in cheek effort.

The third most popular post of the year was this “Gratuitously Offensive Politically Incorrect Joke”, which I still think is very funny, (it’s also a paraprosdokian by the way, and there are some more of them here, which is probably why I like it so much), and scores very highly with anyone searching for Angela Merkel in Google and so on, so the Bundesnachrichtendienst have probably given me the once-over, but decided I am harmless.

Snookie, Chelsea the Borgias and Big Tits was the fourth most popular article of the year, and has been in the Top Ten most popular almost every day of the year. I a eagerly awaiting the next series of the Borgias, not to mention the next series of Downton Abbey and Throne of Kings. I don’t mind crap TV, so long as it’s good quality crap. A lot of you seemed to agree with me that Jeremy Irons and the Crew give good crap. Snookie and the Crew? Not so much. I wish, actually, I had been a TV reviewer, which is, of course, one of the most sought after positions in journalism. Do we think it is too late, Dear Reader? Hell, no!

Last but by no means least – in fifth place – was what I have decided was the WINNER of Advertising F*** Up of the Year, in fact the very first of the series which proved incredibly popular with readers. To save you clicking back to last January, here it is:

The first poster is for a road safety campaign where Daddy has crashed his car and died. The one right next to it is for a notorious lap dancing club. I mean, really?

The first poster is for a road safety campaign where Daddy has crashed his car and died. The one right next to it is for a notorious lap dancing club. I mean, really? Really?

The Advertising F*** Up series were undoubtedly the most popular series of articles in the year. To access them, just type “F***” into the search box and they’ll all be listed for you. (Saves me doing it.)

I am enormously grateful for all the supporters of the Blog, all those who have commented, who have argued, who have provided elucidation, and who have laughed and loved. It is most popular in the USA, in the UK, and in my home country of Australia, and I guess that is inevitable. But in all, people in 172 countries read the blog, which I personally find quite humbling and astonishing, and the free spread of ideas and opinions must surely be the greatest boon the Internet has given the world.

I am especially proud, in the year just gone, for the work we were able to do on awareness to do with bullying, and Alzheimer’s, on clean water for the poor of the world, and on women’s rights. I am also very glad my feverish campaigning for Obama came out on the right side of history, and I hope his second term is more impressive than his first, which is often the case. Let us hope and pray for wisdom for all our political leaders, as the world is a long way from being out of the woods yet – economically, and politically.

I bitterly regret that my warnings on Syria, which predated most commentators in the world, were ignored, but I only have a very small lectern and it is a big world. And anyway, the world only listens when it wants to. Yesterday the United Nations estimated that 60,000 have died in this completely avoidable conflict thus far, and unless Assad’s Alawite regime can be persuaded to decamp to the safe haven of Iran pretty damn quickly that figure could still rise exponentially.  It was – and is – all so unnecessary, and so awfully, inexorably predictable.

I am also grateful for the opportunity to showcase my poetry and creative writing. Thank you for all the kind comments.

I am Bradley Manning. Are you?

I am Bradley Manning. Are you?

As the blog tipped over from 2011 into 2012, I was still deeply distressed by the murderous execution of Troy Davis, campaigning against which had occupied – unsuccessfully – so much of the start of the blog. This year, I have watched with increasing horror as the might of the modern American state has born down relentlessly on Bradley Manning, the well-meaning and honourable serviceman who set off the Wikileaks scandal by releasing for public gaze tens of thousands of classified snippets of information. Expect to hear a lot more about his case in the coming weeks, not least why I believe the man is a modern hero who should be feted, not crucified.

I am still Troy Davis. I am now Bradley Manning.

Happy New Year, Dear Reader.

I promise I do not make these up. I mean, I promise. Honest injun’.

OK. You mean, NO ONE saw this when they put it up? I mean, come on. Even the folks in Chickenfuckin’, Kansas can’t be THAT stupid? Really? Oh well.

Keep sending them in. Over here at Planet Sanity Headquarters we love ‘em to bits.

The other F*** Ups we’ve spotted this year, if you missed ‘em.

The world’s stupidest billboard placement: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-gX

Not the holiday anyone would really want: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-hJ

Stores abusing innocent shoppers: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-j8

My personal favourite so far, the most embarrassingly badly worded headline in history: http://tinyurl.com/7enukvd

Oh, those crazy wacky country McDonalds eaters: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-va

And the most recent. The amazingly handy father: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-vM

Not to mention the Sub Editing F*** Up of the Year, which also got an honourable mention: http://tinyurl.com/7ugguya

More soon, no doubt. Keep ‘em coming people.

Ok, it’s not an ad. But it’s very funny.

Oh, those crazy whacky British private schools …

No wonder there are traffic queues on the M4 to Gloucestershire. And one also has to love the para that reads: Mrs Tuck said there was “something special” about the nurturing spirit of an all girls’ school.

Well, yes.

(Look, don’t blame me, OK? I didn’t write it … I just fearlessly report the world’s lunacies.)

The other F*** Ups we’ve spotted this year, if you missed ‘em.

The world’s stupidest billboard placement: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-gX

Not the holiday anyone would really want: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-hJ

Stores abusing innocent shoppers: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-j8

My personal favourite so far, the most embarrassingly badly worded headline in history: http://tinyurl.com/7enukvd

Oh, those crazy whacky country McDonalds eaters: http://tinyurl.com/83vgpng

And the most recent. The amazingly handy father: http://wp.me/p1LY0z-vM

More soon, no doubt. Keep ‘em coming people.

OK, so, what can we learn from this, kiddiwinks? Well, we can learn that it’s not enough to design a nice poster for the window of your supermarket. You have to actually make it fit the window. Yep, go that extra mile. Still, at least if you do the hard yards you can avoid being the branch manager concerned, or the marketing manager of Waitrose, now this little beauty has gone viral, eh? I mean, it was obviously an accident, and I understand from a tweet by Waitrose that the sign is now down again, but guys … really?

Um ... oh dear, Waitrose

Um ... oh dear, Waitrose. I didn't know that's how you felt about us.

And now another UK retailer, Morrisons, is getting in on the act, too.

Why do they all hate us poor benighted customers so? It just gets curiouser and curiouser …

Oh dear

Well, we all know customers are just an interruption to a well-run business, but really ....

Any other examples gratefully received.

(With thanks to Richard Ember, and countless others.)

Belfast Telegraph

Ooooops.

Oh dear. Oh dearie, dearie me. Oh no, really. Stop it. You’re telling me NO ONE at the Belfast Telegraph thought this was unwise? Less Guinness at lunchtime, boys …

(Thank you, Tamara.)