Blatant thievery at the Chip Shop Awards 2011

I’ve posted before about how I think the Chip Shop Awards are brilliant and a chance to recharge your creative batteries by showcasing ideas that would normally get shot down.

However, no-one takes the awards particularly seriously or considers them as much of an accolade as, say, a Cannes Lion or a D&AD Pencil. So why do agencies risk their reputations by sending in blatantly plagiarised work for the chance to win such a minor award?

This year, there are at least three entries that are blatantly ripped off from elsewhere. In reverse order of heinousness, here are the three I’ve spotted:

3. ‘Great white teeth’ for Colgate by Dinosaur

The ad:

The ‘inspiration’:

The idea from this ad pretty clearly came from a series of sharks photoshopped to have human teeth, posted by c_kick of totalleh.com on B3ta. However, the agency at least seem to have written the line themselves, so that’s kind of OK.

Edit: It’s just been pointed out to me by @adambodfish on twitter that this entry is actually from last year – it’s rather confusing since it’s featured prominently on the Chip Shop homepage! Oh well, the point stands.

2. ‘Every Lidl Helps’ by Walker Agency

A direct rip-off of not only another agency’s work, but work that won a Chip Shop Award in a previous year. Talk about diddling on your own doorstep.

Walker Agency’s ad:

The original, from Saatchi & Saatchi X in 2009:

And a third ad created specifically to take the piss out of this apparent, er, coincidence by Thinking Juice, entered into this year’s awards under the category ‘There’s no such thing as a new idea’ (fairly generous in my opinion, I’d have gone for ‘Copycuntery’ after this great blog):

And the winner:

1. ‘We Sell Fridges’ by C21 Advertising

This one takes the absolute cake. Behold ‘their’ ad:

And then this photo of a real shop in Liverpool, which has been floating around the internet for donkeys’ years:

What an absolute pisstake. It’s even the same photo with the same guy standing in front of the shop. Ironically, this is entered in the ‘best use of plagiarism’ category, because of the use of Selfridges’ branding. Not because they admit they’re thieving gobshites. I’d love to hear their justification for this.

I have to say, stuff like this makes me lose a bit of faith in the industry and the awards. For every ad born out of an original idea or insight and slaved over, there seems to be one stolen wholesale from somewhere else and shamelessly entered with an agency’s name plastered over it. Thankfully it never seems to be the good agencies, and lets us all know never to submit our CVs and portfolios to C21 Advertising. Because you just know your first brief on your first day would be ‘The client likes this YouTube video, can you just do another one of those?’.

For shame.

EDIT: In adding the agency links to this post, I discovered that Walker Agency’s website bears a striking resemblance to Rainey Kelly’s, particularly in the colour scheme and lettering style (click for bigger):

(Walker Agency on the left, RKCR/Y&R on the right)

Really classy, guys.

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