Ad agency apologizes for using foreign stock footage for 'Love the Philippines' video

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, July 2) — Ad agency DDB Philippines on Sunday apologized for using stock footage for "Love the Philippines" video, saying that no public funds were used to produce the “mood video.”

In a statement, DDB Philippines "profusely" apologized to the Department of Tourism (DOT), Secretary Christina Frasco, and the Filipinos for using foreign stock footage.

"While the use of stock footage in mood videos is standard practice in the industry, the use of foreign stock footage was an unfortunate oversight on our agency's part," DDB Philippines said, stressing it should have strictly followed proper screening and approval processes.

"The use of foreign stock footage in a campaign promoting the Philippines is highly inappropriate, and contradictory to the DOT's objectives," it added.

The ad agency also said that no public funds were used and that it was a company initiative to "help pitch the slogan."

"The AVP (audio-visual presentation) in question, uploaded by the agency on social media, was intended to be a mood video to excite internal stakeholders about the campaign," it said.

"It is important to note that the AVP was produced by DDB Philippines at its own expense, and no public funds were released, or would be released, to fund the video," it added. "This was a DDB initiative to help pitch the slogan."

Frasco earlier disclosed on CNN Philippines' The Source that the DOT spent ₱49 million on the "Love the Philippines" campaign and slogan.

Ina Zara-Loyola, DOT public affairs and advocacy director, also told reporters that the video was not part of the contract with DDB Philippines.

"The DOT did not pay, and will not pay for this material. The material can be attributed to the DDB," she said.

Netizens on Saturday pointed out the use of non-original shots in the campaign video, prompting the DOT to release a statement saying it is conducting an "exhaustive investigation" into the matter.

READ: DOT probes 'Love the Philippines' video over alleged use of 'non-original shots'

DDB Philippines said it is "fully cooperating" with the investigation.

The ad agency also said the AVP was taken down, and that it was an isolated incident. Succeeding materials have yet to be produced for the tourism campaign, it added.

"We sincerely hope this will not diminish the genuine love and appreciation the stakeholders and the public have been showing for the ‘Love the Philippines’ campaign," it said.

Salceda: You don’t ‘set the mood’ with plagiarism

Albay Rep. Joey Salceda, who earlier called out the DOT for leaving out Mayon Volcano in the new tourism campaign, did not mince words on the use of foreign stock footage in the promotional video.

“For something as critical as an entire country's image, you don't ‘set the mood’ with plagiarism,” he said.

“Clearly, the exclusion of Mayon and other tourist attractions intrinsic to the Philippine brand was just a symptom of ‘trabahong tamad’ [lazy work] that is now evident to everyone,” he added.

Salceda also said the issue proves his latest point that the DOT should either apologize to Albay or fire its consultant.

“I hope all these issues can be rectified before the budget hearings. Otherwise, I have a duty to ask questions,” he added.

READ: Salceda wants to look into contract for ‘Love the Philippines’ campaign