Scam Kia paedophilia ad leads to awards ban on ad agency

The organisers of the Cannes Lions advertising awards have withdrawn two Lions over what appears to have been a scam ad entry which promoted paedophilia. All of the agency staff on the credits have been banned from competing for one year.

kia_air_conditioner_teacherAfter public outrage at the ad, Kia insisted that the ad had never been commissioned or run.

According to the Lions:

“Following discussions between the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and Moma Propaganda São Paulo, Brazil, the organisers of the Festival are withdrawing both the Silver Lion won in the Press category and the Bronze Lion won in Outdoor awarded for the Kia Motors air conditioning dual zone campaign ‘Teacher’ and ‘Princess’.

“Commenting on the withdrawal, Philip Thomas, Festival CEO said, “The Cannes Lions rules state clearly that if requested, proof must be provided that campaigns ran and were legitimately created for a fee-paying client. Despite many conversations, Moma Propaganda have not provided the proof we require and therefore the Lions have been withdrawn.”

“In addition, as stated in our terms and conditions, we reserve the right to take further action against individuals listed on the credits who cannot prove the veracity of the entries to our satisfaction. On this occasion, a decision has been made to ban any work created by those credited on the entry for one year. Therefore entries will not be accepted from these individuals for the 2012 Cannes Lions Festival,” added Philip Thomas.

(Click on images below to see full version)

Kia_air_conditioner_teacher ad fullKia_air_conditioner_princess



  1. Matt
    22 Jul 11
    8:53 am

  2. Ahh, so no-one thought that an issue may come up at some point ? In this case, I’d think the ones that judged this would have the reddest face of them all

  3. Noni
    22 Jul 11
    9:18 am

  4. Glad we’ve established pedophilia in advertising is BAD.

    Now, when will we do the same for the overt sexual exploitation of women in the industry?

    Also, just want to get this straight – the awards weren’t withdrawn because of the *content* but rather because the campaigns didn’t run?

    Wow, sometimes this industry makes me want to puke.

  5. Anonymous
    22 Jul 11
    9:20 am

  6. Forget the fact it’s a scam, how the hell did it win anything?

  7. ed
    22 Jul 11
    9:21 am

  8. How the hell was this awarded in the first place?

  9. sarah
    22 Jul 11
    9:25 am

  10. The ads aren’t even good! they make me want to stab something…

  11. Carol
    22 Jul 11
    9:32 am

  12. Both of those are so offensive, it’s hard to put into words how awful they are. Is that really the best way these guys thought they could sell a car?

    Clearly there are far too few women in the advertising world. What a sick culture.

  13. Tim Bennett
    22 Jul 11
    9:47 am

  14. “You mean this blatantly pedophilic erotica wasn’t commissioned?! OUTRAGEOUS.”

  15. OtherAndrew
    22 Jul 11
    10:12 am

  16. I’m with commenters 3 & 4 – the concept is absolutely abhorrent. Banning these guys doesn’t seem like a sufficient response. Personally, I’d be referring them to the authorities so they can have their hard-drives checked…

  17. brucey
    22 Jul 11
    10:58 am

  18. I saw these ads a while back when looking at the press winners. Two things came to mind – 1. How paedophilistic are these ads; and 2. is paedophilistic even a word?

  19. renee
    22 Jul 11
    11:02 am

  20. For crap like this to be created is bad enough and then to get two Lions at Cannes? What a joke. It isn’t even clever, just plain creepy

  21. Lucio
    22 Jul 11
    11:34 am

  22. @Renee – totally agree, and I suspect that the (cough) creative minds behind this turd of a concept, simply don’t get any/enough action below the waistline other that that which they provide themselves.

  23. Useyourbrain.
    22 Jul 11
    11:43 am

  24. What are you gronks on about? If you read each cartoon from top to bottom, as they’re meant to be read, each is a separate story. One is an innocent story that leaves you feeling nothing. The other is a hot sexual encounter. Dual Zone Air conditioning, get it? The problem comes when you read them from left to right and imagine the panel on the right is somehow related to the one on its left. It isn’t and it’s not meant to be.

    @Useyourbrain – try again dude. Read the top version. It’s meant to be left right, not up down.

  25. Brian
    22 Jul 11
    12:24 pm

  26. I’m stunned these received awards. The best explanation I can come up with is that they stood out for breaking the conventions for car ads (which they do) and for being edgy (which they are).

    What wasn’t factored in was that they are disturbingly creepy and completely wrong for the brand, which is probably why Kia had the good sense not to run them.

  27. ed
    22 Jul 11
    1:24 pm

  28. Yeah @Useyourbrain put your mind back in the gutter take another look. If you read down the right column or as you called it the “hot sexual encounter” column it doesn’t make sense.

  29. Saaartchis
    22 Jul 11
    1:53 pm

  30. That’s not a Scum ad THIS is a scum ad

  31. Scott Taylor
    22 Jul 11
    1:54 pm

  32. @useyourbrain Even if you are right (which I’m pretty sure you’re not), at some point someone during the creative process would’ve said…

    “So we’ve created this ad that if read left to right (which admittedly is the natural tendency), is basically paedophilic…but don’t worry cause if you read it from top to bottom, it’s maybe ok”

    If the comments here are anything to go by, you’d only deeply offend 90% of people. Absolutely worth one of the most prestigious ad awards going around.

  33. Tracey
    22 Jul 11
    3:04 pm

  34. I feel this type of advertising has no place in our world. It was only withdrawn as the adds were not run and commissioned by the client. They should never have been accepted for entry and should not have won a cretive award

  35. Jack
    22 Jul 11
    4:17 pm

  36. Useyourbrain, clearly you need to.

  37. curious and curiouser
    22 Jul 11
    4:23 pm

  38. Any comment yet from Ant Keogh? He was on the jury.

  39. Anonymous
    23 Jul 11
    6:19 pm

  40. Cannes is a joke if this is the kind of crap that wins metal. I’d suggest the judges that awarded the lions be banned for life if they think this is good advertising.

  41. Michael
    25 Jul 11
    10:22 am

  42. “Glad we’ve established pedophilia in advertising is BAD.
    Now, when will we do the same for the overt sexual exploitation of women in the industry?
    Also, just want to get this straight – the awards weren’t withdrawn because of the *content* but rather because the campaigns didn’t run?
    Wow, sometimes this industry makes me want to puke.”

    Totally agree @Noni

  43. Duh
    26 Jul 11
    9:13 am

  44. I agree with @useyourbrain. It’s not meant to be a representation of the same girl, the someone just goofed by making her look like an older version of the previous girl. No paedophilia, just an oversight in the way the ad could be most easily interpreted: but by no means the only way it could be interpreted. Not saying I don’t see where you’re coming from, but there is more than one way to read a comic.

  45. Michael
    26 Jul 11
    9:37 am

  46. Seriously @Duh/@useyourbrain? (its pretty obvious you are the same person)
    The comic CLEARLY reads left to right. Look at the bottom panels of the first ad. The left says “So where should we start?” and the right says “How about anatomy?”. Seems like a pretty clear conversation to me. Now read the right side top to bottom in the way you think its supposed to be read.
    “It’s my pleasure believe me”
    “mmmm it’s delicious, so juicy”
    “How about anatomy?”
    That makes about as much sense as making up a fake user to support your argument.