Telegraph and Times shun Olympus work

By MICHELE MARTIN,, Friday, 27 June 1997 12:00AM

An Olympus press ad has been banned by the Telegraph and the Times because it is a pastiche of an obituary page.

An Olympus press ad has been banned by the Telegraph and the Times

because it is a pastiche of an obituary page.

The ad, by Lowe Howard-Spink, uses a death notice format to mourn the

passing of traditional cameras in a promotion for the company’s Digital

Systems range.

The cameras store images on computer which can be accessed using a


The full-page black-and-white execution features tributes to such

traditional photographic paraphernalia as the darkroom, the film and the

one-hour processing service to make its point.

A tribute to negatives reads: ’The negatives have died, aged 162. And,

as lens caps are placed on to millions of cameras around the world as a

mark of respect, it’s hard to believe they are no longer with us. In the

end though, nothing could be done to save them, their demise eventually

being hastened by the arrival of Olympus digital cameras.’ The ad was

written by Paul Marshall and art directed by Gary Marshall.

But the two broadsheets did not see the funny side and refused to carry

the ad when it broke last Thursday. It has appeared in the Guardian,

Observer, Independent, Daily Mail and Evening Standard.

Tim Lindsay, Lowes’ chief executive, confirmed the two papers had turned

down the idea, but added that it was not intended to shock. He said:

’Without trying to be deliberately controversial, we do try to do

dramatic ads for Olympus and sometimes that rubs some publications up

the wrong way.

It’s unfortunate that a couple of papers have chosen to take this


No-one at either the Times or the Telegraph was available for


Olympus Digital Cameras has won the Newslink Radio Creative Award for

its radio ads, also through Lowes.

This article was first published on


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