How Wrong Is It To Use Nude Children In Billboard Advertising? Shenzhen Agency Finds Out

Shenzhen billboard nude children

The Shenzhen ad firm Lanbite Advertising has come under fire recently for an eight-meter-high billboard on the Shenzhen-Hong Kong border that shows four naked children playing in the grass. SCMP has the news:

Since the advert first appeared late last month, tens of thousands of commuters passing between Lok Ma Chau and Huanggang in Shenzhen have probably seen it.

“It should be a private picture for a mother to keep at home as part of the family’s memories,” said Daisy Lee, a Tuen Men resident who has a six-year-old daughter and commutes between the two cities regularly.

“It is definitely pointless and inappropriate to post [that] in public, especially for commercial advertising.”

We’ve had this discussion before: when five-year-old girls were used as bikini models at a car show in Wuhan last month, and when a newspaper ran a photo of a kid peeing into a cup at a hotpot restaurant in August. How old is too old, exactly, for nudity? The kids in the billboard — how old do they look? What if they were all three years older? Too much? I really don’t know.

But what is almost certain is that the controversy has been a boon for the ad agency. The image is intended to market the billboard space itself, so the pitch might go something like this: Hate this image? Pay us to replace it!

Although it must be said that the picture has absolutely nothing to do with the purpose of the sign. The large words to the left read “for rent” — which is, at best, incongruous, and at worst…

Confusion over the short slogan next to the picture – “for rent” – appears to be adding to the debate. Some who have seen the sign say it could appear as if they boys themselves are for rent.

“Oh this is dreadful and just appalling,” wrote one Facebook user. “Totally inappropriate and downright creepy, given what the sign says.”

Shenzhen ad agency gets flak for billboard with nude children (SCMP, h/t Alicia)

    5 Responses to “How Wrong Is It To Use Nude Children In Billboard Advertising? Shenzhen Agency Finds Out”

    1. Jay

      I saw Chinese kids almost every day, not completely naked, but pants down, peeing or shitting in public.

      Nobody cares.

      Why would anybody in China care about this?

      How is this worse than shitting in public?

    2. P.

      When I lived in Baoding, I used to frequent a supermarket that was well-known in the expat community for the huge photograph of a bottomless infant with an extraordinarily large pair of swollen pink balls that greeted shoppers as they escalated to the second floor.

      That was weird, but this billboard is infinitesimally more pervy. I think in any other context—found on a hard drive, for example—it’d be viewed as child pornography.

      Whoever conceptualized this concept is clearly a pedophile. I hope it stays up to generate even more hostility between the Mainland and Hong Kongers.


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