During the Department of Tourism (DOT)’s 50th-anniversary celebration, the organization launched an enhanced campaign called “Love the Philippines” alongside an audiovisual presentation (AVP) featuring the Philippines’ most popular attractions. However, netizens were quick to point out alleged stock footage or non-original shots of locations outside of the country in it. The DOT has undergone investigations since then.
Today, DDB Group Philippines–the DOT’s contracted agency for the campaign’s AVP–has released an official statement regarding the issue where they take full responsibility for the matter. It reads:
“DDB Philippines profusely apologizes to Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco, the Department of Tourism (DOT), and the Filipino People for the apparent use of non-original/stock footage in the audiovisual presentation (AVP) shown in the launch event of the Love The Philippines campaign.
“As DOT’s agency on record for the launch of this campaign, we take full responsibility over this matter. The AVP in question, uploaded by the agency on social media was intended to be a mood video to excite internal stakeholders about the campaign.”
Since the AVP was not originally made for public release, the advertising agency also mentioned that the making of the video was at its own expense, and not from public funds. It continues:
“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. This was a DDB initiative to help pitch the slogan.
“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. Proper screening and approval processes should have been strictly followed. The use of foreign stock footage in a campaign promoting the Philippines is highly inappropriate, and contradictory to the DOT’s objectives.”
Nevertheless, DDB clarified that the previously released video has already been taken down and the campaign’s supposed AVP has yet to be produced. They also hope that the incident does not affect the campaign in any way. It concludes:
“This is an isolated incident and the AVP has already been taken down as of this time. The succeeding ad materials have yet to be produced for this campaign. We are fully cooperating with, and assure our full compliance towards the Department of Tourism’s investigation of this matter.
“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.”
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