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When tourism ads go wrong

Last week a little town in the west of Hertfordshire, England released a map for tourists. Unfortunately, the map, said one Facebook user, “looks like a willy”. It does – and seems to come complete with a urethra.



"You could accuse of us of being a bit naive but canals are long, straight things, and when you draw a map it tends to be that sort of shape," the Canal and River Trust’s Simon Salem told the BBC.


Though he did add, "If it gets at least one more person down to the canal then it has worked".


Sometimes, destination marketers go from tongue-in-cheek to foot-in-mouth in just a few steps. Check out more examples of when tourism ads go wrong below.


In Colorado’s Fruita, whether it was ignorance or just an attempt at cleverness that failed, the town logo was soon changed when residents, who clearly spoke internet, complained.



When Airbnb launched their new logo, the internet became a free for all as people such as Twitter user @acarboni, spent “all morning deciding what sexual organ the new Airbnb logo looks the most like”.



Closer to home, we have our own little (Lara) Bingle in the form of the ‘Where the [insert offensive word to our intended markets here] [insert other offensive word to our other intended markets here] you?’ campaign.



Written by: Gaya Avery
Published: 18 August 2014

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