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Anubis is the only site in the Middle East devoted to combating copycat and spoof/ghost ads by exposing them (with facts) in an effort to truly raise the bar in the creative industry

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This is a new low even for Mullen Lowe

First published 6th of July, 2016

Less original: by Mullen Lowe – Kuwait

First published December, 2018

Here we go again…

Copycat, cut & paste and plagiarism are synonymous with theft, fraud and lack of creativity all of which are turning our industry into a commodity.

Stealing someone else idea and attributing it to yourself is bad enough but to win a pitch for a major luxury automotive brand in Kuwait and make huge financial benefits with a stolen idea is a crime that should be punishable by law in my view for the following reasons:

  1. It does not show respect towards the Art Director who is credited with the original idea who happens to be a fellow industry practitioner – one of our own big family.

  2. It does not show respect towards the client who is most likely paying an arm and a leg for the agency “creative work” while unwittingly being set up by the agency for a probable lawsuit due to their own plagiarism and betrayal of the client trust.

  3. It does not show respect to any one of the numerous agencies that spent sleepless nights brainstorming, researching, sketching, crafting, etc. etc. only to lose this pitch to Mexican Art Director Oscar S. who is clueless of the fact that his work which was plagiarized by Mullen Lowe actually won the pitch for the Mercedes Kuwait account.

  4. It does not show respect towards the Mullen Lowe international brand and creative work by their own management and team in the Kuwait office.

What is your opinion? which point best resonated with you? please let us know in the comments section. we would love to hear your mind.

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Published in Communicate magazine. Lebanon. April 2013.

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Once again an inspiring fact in the words of passionate creatives, I couldn’t have stated it better myself “Scam ads -Are unethical. It’s fraud. You’re cheating against me, us, your peers. You are basically padding your resume, not very different to using steroids in baseball, falsifying sources in journalism, or faking a test. It’s wrong, plain and simple. -Damages brands. In the digital age, unapproved communications can fly around the internet causing a PR nightmare. This also sets up a ripe opportunity for libel suits. -Lots of awards mean better jobs. Unfortunately, this is true. There are too many egotisical rockstars who’ve gotten those jobs based on faking it, at the expense of the many talented people who haven’t needed to fake it and who do the real work. Yes, there is a role for outlandish ballsy risktakers. But there should not be a role for unprofessional cheaters. -Creates a false sense of talent and ability for agencies. Creativity is one thing. Being able to make it for a real brand is another. An agency that wins tons of awards but who’s real work is less than stellar really is only fooling themselves. Sadly though, they also end up attracting talent who will be disappointed with the real output. Same with the clients who thing that are getting a great agency. If they’re willing to fake their entires, what about timesheets, billings, etc? What’s the line when it comes to professional ethics? -Ruins the process and creative department’s overall credibility. Award shows should celebrate the best work that gets produced. That’s our job. That’s the hard part. If you can’t make a good scam ad with no brief, then frankly, you must suck. If you’ve ever worked with CD who’s built a career on scam, you’ll see how hard it is for them to create great work with real briefs. Talented as they are, they often fail to do what their job is – sell. Creativity and selling go hand in hand in this thing we call advertising, and that should be rewarded. Scam doesn’t ‘raise the bar’ of creativity. It lowers it. And lowers the credibility of the people, agencies and shows who promote it”.

Winner of Silver in the Print category PELICANS

Winner of Bronze in the Outdoor category PELICANS

Agency: Team Y&R Dubai

Client: Harvey Nicholos

Year: 2013

There are some other examples of this BIG idea and art-direction which involves a toaster suronded by (obviously) toast bread and yet another one with a deodorant can surrounded by “screws” and yet another one featuring a pencil sharpener and pencils, one more features an electric socket and a plethora of plugs.

Check out the links

WWF 9/11

Shocking creativity

Moo Zain = not good

Also interesting is to check out the following links which prove the adage  that “lightening does NOT strike twice at the same place” and that “A good idea will sneak up behind you, pull your pants down, and run away giggling”

Harvey Davidson – The agency that copied these ads also copied many more and won Dubai Lynx 2012 agency of the year

Dirty copycat by Dubai Team Young & Rubicam gets washed out by Joe Lepompe

top that


Balanced bottles


Hand cuffs

Hammer Time

Food for thought

Hot ad, cool ride

have a chocolate break, have a land rover

Yet another #$$ hole

October 2004 


Less original: Zain

Agency: JWT

Creative Director: Mazen Faied

Kuwait – Jan 2008


Hmmm, so much like the MTC…I mean Zain; cupcake/spoon ad.

copy an idea, replace the coffee with a cupcake and voilaaa you have a Zain ad but that does not mean it is a good ad

Client: Cafe’ Supreme

Agency: C3

Country: Kuwait – 2009





Country: UAE

Awards: Cannes Lions 2004 Press No-Prize

Account Supervisor: Rupen Desai

Advertiser Supervisor: Anil Gopalan

Photographer: Tejal Patni

Entrant Company: LOWE & PARTNERS DUBAI

Creative Team: Nirmal Diwadkar, Manoj Ammanath, Adham Obeid