Scam ads are a chronic problem in adland, a sort of dark underbelly of the industry where agencies and individuals trying to win awards submit work that's never been approved by a client or run more than a couple times.
Scam Ads and Ghost Ads: Their Long History and Sordid Future
Every few years an ad is so offensive that it gets noticed beyond its home country and makes global headlines. This happened most recently with the Ford Figo fiasco, which led Ad Age to delve into the matter again to see how it impacts the reputation of agencies today and map the ways that clients are put at risk. But the practice goes back much further than that.
Here's a roundup of our coverage, both recent and from the archives -- a steadily-growing timeline of incidents and controversies over scam ads, also known as "ghost ads."
Is the Ad-Awards Race Crushing the Client? April 2, 2013
Lighten Up! Ford, Others Are Overreacting to Figo Fiasco April 1, 2013
Four Steps To Protect Your Brand From Scam Ads April 01, 2013
Amid Ford Figo Flap, U.K. Awards Show Applauds Scam Ads March 27, 2013
July 21, 2011
Sept. 21, 2009
Cannes: No Ban for Agencies Behind Scam Ads Oct. 14, 2009
Bad for DDB, Bad for Ad Shows, Just Plain Bad Sept. 7, 2009
Sept. 4, 2009
Sept. 3, 2009
April 1, 2009
Epoch Loses Lion Over Racy Penney Ad Controversy June 26, 2008
Real-life Ghostbuster June 25, 2001
Ghosts of Cannes June 11, 2001