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Reebok’s Cheating Ad Causes Major Backlash

UPDATE: On March 22, 2012, Reebok announced it was pulling the “cheater” ad.

“Cheat on your girlfriend, not on your workout.”

That’s the tagline on a recent Reebok motivational ad. That tagline has gotten them press and news coverage, but not the kind they were hoping for.

The popular fitness brand is going to have a hard time recovering from this. Once images of the ad were released, the social media world had a lot to say. CheaterVille.com, a website dedicated to exposing cheaters across the world, took the strongest actions regarding this ad. In addition to making sure the world saw the ad, founder James McGibney sent a message direct to Reebok headquarters.

“This form of advertising shows a dishonest and disrespectful attitude towards women and your company should be ashamed to have even placed this ad in various places thinking it would be perceived in any other way. CheaterVille will not stand by and let you keep this ad running without a fight. We will start informing our millions of followers to boycott Reebok until the ad is removed and a public apology is given.”

The ad campaign was quickly scrapped and Reebok spokesperson Dan Sarro gave some explanations. First it was explained that the ad was not part of a global campaign and that it has only appeared in Germany. Sarro expressed the company’s regret over the offensive material.

“The signs were removed as soon as we were made aware of them. I can assure you that Reebok does not condone this message or cheating in any way. We apologize for the offensive nature of these materials, and are disappointed that they appeared at all.”

Reebok is already in a pinch due to last year’s lost lawsuit that resulted in $25 million dollars in refunds. The charges were of false advertising over the claims that their toning shoes worked better than normal shoes for getting muscle into shape.

Many people across Twitter agreed about the crassness of the ad. Many also thought it was just foolish.

@openmikey “Just plain stupid if you ask me.”

@street_musician “It would definitely change my opinion of Reebok…stupid….how about we just don’t cheat on anything!”

Definitely not a motivator for most people. It seems likely people will not remain faithful to Reebok after this one.

Also Read:

Yoplait Pulls Ad Due to Eating Disorder Controversy

Burger King Ad Gets a Diabetes Makeover

March 21st, 2012

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