Yes, she's strange and different...but not THAT different.

13 June 2007

Images in Advertising Awards

Gay and Lesbian Inclusive Advertising Award Winners Announced

IKEA Honored as Outstanding Commercial at Commercial Closet Association's Images in Advertising Awards

New York, NY - June 12, 2007 - Commercial Closet Association awarded companies and advertising agencies last night at the third annual Images In Advertising Awards for best demonstrating inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals (GLBT) in mainstream print, broadcast, and internet advertising campaigns during the past year. Commercial Closet Association, a nonprofit organization that educates advertisers about GLBT references for a more accepting society and successful business results, chose IKEA for the night's top honor of Outstanding Commercial. Winning advertisements can be viewed at commercialcloset.com/winners.

Emmy Award-winning comedian Judy Gold served as emcee and congratulated the winners in front of an audience of several hundred advertising professionals at the Time Warner Center in New York City. The Images in Advertising Awards are the only national awards for the advertising industry that focus on recognizing positive images of the GLBT community to set a responsible standard for ads that include gay and lesbian references.

Outstanding Commercial winner IKEA followed up its famed 1994 gay male couple ad with "Living Room," both produced by advertising agency Deutsch. The spot includes a collage of diverse families in their respective living rooms. The last shot is of a happy African-American and Asian-American male couple with their daughter on their living room floor, resting up against each other, as the voiceover poses the final question: "Why shouldn't sofas come in flavors, just like families?"

"We applaud all of this year's nominees and winners," said Michael Wilke, Executive Director of Commercial Closet Association. "The winning IKEA commercial and winners in other categories showed not only a GLBT individual, but depicted GLBT relationships as endearing and playful. Inclusiveness in media is a key to fostering a more accepting society for the GLBT community."

Winners in other categories were also announced :

Outstanding Print Ad (Appearing in Mainstream Media): Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams/Agency: In-house. Ad features gay male couple relaxing on their Mitchell Gold & Bob Williams furniture with an explanation of its comfort and design.

Outstanding Print Ad (Appearing in U.S. GLBT Media): Subaru of America/Agency: Moon City Productions. One of three gay themed ads focuses on the transgender market with a sequined gown appearing in a row of tuxedos in a man's closet and copy claiming Subaru too is "ready for any occasion."

Outstanding Print Ad (Appearing in International GLBT Media): Ra-Re/Agency: Flash & Partners. In the ad for European clothing designer, a gay male couple pushes a baby cart together while dressed in the apparel.

Outstanding International Commercial: Nokia/Agency: Grey Worldwide. The Nokia 6280 shows what appears to be a gay couple on a date, only to reveal that one man is actually there virtually, via video phone.

Outstanding Lesbian Portrait: Time magazine/Agency: In-house. The ad asks if gay families "are different" and shows a lesbian couple embracing while holding their newborn child.

Outstanding Interactive Ad (GLBT Internet Media): Lufthansa/Agency: OutNow Consulting. The moving web based ad features a gay couple photographing themselves with a digital camera on a vacation.

Outstanding Business-to-Business/Trade Ad: Time Magazine/Agency: In-house.

Outstanding Nonprofit Campaign: Gill Foundation/Agency: Public Interest and Radical Media. In the television "Moo Commercial Campaign," a puppy named Norman moos instead of barks, as the narrator makes the case that Norman did not choose to "be this way."

Clean Up Your Act Notice: DaimlerChrylser-Dodge Caliber / Agency: BBDO. After a female fairy gets hit by a Dodge Caliber she lands on a cement sidewalk and a muscular male laughs. In revenge, she turns him into a preppy, pastel sweater-dressed man walking four small Pomeranians on pink leashes and he reacts with an squeal. The narrator says the new Dodge Caliber is "anything but cute."

Past winners of Outstanding Commercial are 2005's Diet Pepsi "Guy Watcher" commercial starring Queer Eye for the Straight Guy's Carson Kressley by ad agency DDB Needham, and United Church of Christ's "Night Club" commercial by Gotham Inc. in the awards' inaugural year.

Ads were nominated by Commercial Closet Association's Executive Director Michael Wilke and finalists were selected by CCA's Advisory Board. Winners were chosen by the group's Governing Board and were announced at the awards ceremony. A list of the Advisory and Governing Board members, composed of leading names in gay media and the advertising industry, is available at www.CommercialCloset.org/cgi-bin/iowa/about.html. Contact Commercial Closet Association for a complete list of nominees or view them online at www.CommercialCloset.org along with 85 years of positive and negative GLBT images in advertising. To date, the site hosts over 3,500 ads in its virtual library.

The Third Annual Images In Advertising Awards was sponsored by Time Warner, and was further supported by ad agency sponsors Lowe Worldwide, Prime Access Inc., Leo Burnett, McCann Erickson, Interpublic, SSH+K, Double Platinum, and MergeMedia, as well as companies including Diet Pepsi, Google, Orbitz.com, Bridgestone, Subaru, and Washington Mutual, among others.


About Commercial Closet Association

Commercial Closet Association was founded by veteran advertising industry journalist Michael Wilke in 2001 and has become a sought-after authority on GLBT images in advertising. The nonprofit organization educates and influences the advertising industry to understand, respect and include lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) references in advertising to achieve a more accepting society and successful business results. The organization provides advertising training, produces a syndicated column on trends in GLBT advertising, hosts the annual Images In Advertising Awards, and maintains a powerful ad library of over 3,500 GLBT ads spanning 33 countries and 85 years with ratings at www.CommercialCloset.org.

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