Mouse trap or copycat trap?


THE ORIGINAL: Chesdale Cheese – 2004

“Two times more calcium for stronger bones”.

Source : Cannes Archive Online,

Agency : FCB (Singapore)



LESS ORIGINAL: Kraft Foods Cheese – 2008

“With extra calcium for strong bones”.

Agency : JWT Dubaï (UAE) 

Awarded Silver at the Dubai Lynx!!!

Ref: http://www.dubailynx.com/winners/outdoor/win_3_1_06233.html


Source: http://www.joelapompe.net/2008/05/20/trapped-juries-pris-au-piege-de-la-copie/


Let’s see now…both ads are for “cheese” both ads have the same visual and art direction; both ads have the same headline…but they are four years apart!!! So could it be just another coincidence? Or is it just another (successful) attempt at winning agency of the year at any cost and by any means.


Congratulations FP7 Doha – you ARE the agency of the year in my book.

To add insult to injury the creative director of this awarded copycat is serving as a judge on the 2008 MENA Crystal Creativity Awards jury!!! search for JWT Dubai and see what comes up on this blog alone.



The above ads have the main visual as a mouse trap…but the product is not cheese and the product benefit is not stronger bones and the mouse trap is not damaged as a result. So no one is saying that you can’t use a visual of a mouse trap in your communication but what i am saying is please dont use it the way it is featured in the original examples at the top of this post in the same category and the same headline in other words…dont copy.


Lateral Thinking: When a low probability line of thought leads to an effective idea, there is a “Eureka” moment and at once the low-probability approach acquires the highest probability. – Edward De Bono. Excerpt from a book by John Townsend & Jacques Favier titled The Creative Manager’s Pocketbook. Page: 2. ISBN: 1-870471-69-5.


A copycat is a person that mimics or repeats the behavior of another. The term is often derogatory, suggesting a lack of originality. The expression may derive from kittens that learned by imitating the behaviors of their mothers. – Wikipedia.


Plagiarism: The abuse of another’s original work by copying it and passing it off as one’s own. As defined in Alastair Campbell book titled The Designer’s Lexicon. Page: 293 ISBN: 0-304-35505-4.


“Imitation is the sincerest form of thievery” excerpt from a book by Capsule titled Design Matters. Page: 84. ISBN -13:978-1-59253-341-1.

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