Axe is ready to give credit to a Reddit user for its ad campaign that, ahem, borrowed some ideas from Reddit.
Axe’s latest ad was based on the premise of Shower Thoughts, which is a popular topic of conversation on Reddit, where users post their own anonymous musings. The Axe ad, however, wasn’t just inspired by the concept, it took a “shower thought” virtually word for word from a Reddit post dated seven months ago.
The Axe ad featured someone in the shower saying: “If you’re criticized for being short, they’re really just saying the worst thing about you is that there isn’t more of you.”
A YouTube video of the ad was posted to Reddit last week and caused a backlash from angry users there. They claimed Axe stole the idea. There were some reports that Reddit was looking for compensation for the originator of the idea.
Axe had not officially responded to the outcry until today, and it sent an email to Digiday saying it would work with the Reddit user who had the initial idea.
“Our intent with the Shower Thoughts series is to highlight the great creativity and conversations already happening in pop culture. As a champion for creative thought and self-expression, Axe will collaborate on an upcoming piece of content with the person who posted the Shower Thought being referenced,” Unilever, Axe’s parent company, said in the statement.
The Redditor will help write an upcoming piece for the brand and get paid for the contribution, a rep for Axe said.
The company could not immediately be reached for follow up questions. The campaign launched late last month, and was produced by Defy Media and Mindshare Entertainment.