Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

New Ads for Huggies Diapers Raise a Stink in Israel

An ad campaign featuring denim-diaper-clad babies has Israeli parents steaming

By: Emma Mazerall

Published: May 30th, 2014 in Business » Israel

Huggies diapers recently launched a campaign in Israel to showcase their new line of denim-patterned diapers.

Created by McCann-Erickson Israel, the ads show cute toddlers doing their best Zoolander impressions as they pose with skateboards and guitars, wearing bow ties and oversized sunglasses. And of course, the ever-so-stylish denim diapers: “The Most Important Item in the Wardrobe,” according to Huggies.

While the intention seems clearly to spoof the world of grown up fashionistas, some Israeli parents have claimed that the boys and girls featured in the ads are being exploited.

A social media backlash has begun, gaining momentum on Facebook and Twitter, with parents calling for a boycott of Huggies products. Some Israelis have complained that the ads are akin to child pornography, noting the ‘adult’ manner in which the toddlers are acting.

“Your campaign shows babies in sexual, adult and provocative poses,” wrote Maya Naveh, “It’s disgusting and pedophile [sic].” One man went so far as to compare the behaviour of the toddlers to prostitutes he’d seen in Amsterdam’s Red Light District.

A representative from Huggies quickly responded to the increasing controversy, stating that the ads were simply “a celebration of colour and fun.”

Despite the vocal disapproval of some Israelis, Huggies Facebook page also featured many parents who had snapped shots of their babies in the new denim diapers.

A similar campaign, featuring the same denim style diapers, launched in North America several years ago with no such complaints.

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