Do you remember that controversial Belo ad about quarantine life that was pulled out the day it was released? Well, the story doesn’t end there, folks! According to Adobo Magazine, because of their ‘Pandemic Effect’ ad, 4As Philippines has decided to suspend GIGIL from its membership.
GIGIL has been suspended for a year after a “thorough investigation and assessment by the Professional Practice and Ethics Committee” which found that the ad was deemed in violation of specific items in 4A’s code of ethics.
In case you’ve forgotten all about the issue, basically, the “Pandemic Effect” campaign, which portrayed a woman who underwent bodily changes in the middle of a pandemic, got a lot of flak from netizens for its tone-deaf message. Both Belo Beauty and GIGIL have apologized for the campaign, and the ad has since been taken down.
So what does GIGIL have to say about this decision? Well, they said they “respect and abide” by the ruling of 4As Philippines. “We acknowledge that alongside the unexpected thinking that comes with our work, we must always be mindful of sensitivity and respect,” they said in a statement. GIGIL also guaranteed the public that business will go as usual and that the suspension will not “in any way hamper” their work.
That’s not where the controversy stops, people. Here’s some more tea: apparently, GIGIL’s co-founder Herbert Hernandez was accused of alleged sexual harassment by creative director Denise “Deng” Tee on social media.
Hernandez filed an “official criminal complaint” of cyber libel against Tee to the Department of Justice on August 26. This also led to 4As holding a meeting to address the allegations of the “unprofessional conduct” that violates the 4As code of ethics.
A year after their suspension sentence, it is expected that GIGIL will automatically be reinstated into its membership with the 4As. Let’s hope advertisers will learn from their poor decisions in the future.
Art Daniella Sison