10 crises and CONTrOVERSIES
1Chinese consumers find their voice The last 12 months witnessed a watershed in China as increasingly cashed-up, internet-connected and vocal consumers took action against SK-II (chemicals in products) and Dell (false advertising), sparking product recalls and a class-action lawsuit respectively. Brands would do well to accept that the age of true Chinese consumerism has now begun.
2 Thai ad ban gives alcohol brands headaches Thailand's post-coup legislature was quick to implement a ban on all alcohol advertising, only to relax it slightly when the big players threatened to withdraw sponsorship support of sports and events. Even so, an additional two per cent 'sin tax' was still put in place.
3 Livedoor Japan falls from grace For a lesson in how to run a company into the ground, look no further than Japan's Livedoor. Headed by the flamboyant Takafumi Horie, the rising online venture crashed back to earth when he and his cohorts were arrested on suspicion of security fraud.
4 Playboy sparks fiery protests in Indonesia The racy title launched in 1953 and, five decades later, in strongly-Muslim Indonesia, it attracted widespread protests, resulting in advertisers running in the opposite direction and an office relocation to mainly-Hindu Bali.
5 Another pesticide scare for colas in India For the second time in three years, Coke and Pepsi India were hit with a pesticide scare. Proving that old dogs can learn new tricks, both tackled the issue to alleviate concerns and get their drinks back on shelves.
6 M&C Saatchi India's 'Some scars never go' Mock ads for a skincare client, which linked the World Trade Center, Hiroshima and Bhopal tragedies with the strapline 'Some scars never go', were uploaded onto an industry website - M&C Saatchi fired the art director responsible for the work.
7 Rolling Stone trips in China Rolling Stone had a baptism of fire at its launch, after a China court ruled it was published illegally by licensee One Media Group.
8Zoe Tay swallows Singapore celebrity mom Zoe Tay created a ruckus with her 'My secret to beautiful skin? I swallow' Imedeen ad. Many described it as another gargantuan lapse in judgement by Tay.
9 M&C Saatchi's 'Bloody' ads answer few questions M&C's 'Where the bloody hell are you?' ads for Tourism Australia were banned in some markets for bad language and questioned as not relevant in other markets such as Japan, where the phrase doesn't translate well.
10 Chinese court rules in favour of Starbucks Starbucks China won a victory against a mainland firm using a similar logo, branding and colours, despite Western companies being frowned upon for taking on local enterprises.