Touch – MyPlan and a question of inspiration*

Touch – MyPlan and a question of inspiration*

By Admin I :  It’s so classical from us Lebanese to dig into finding copycats of a successful work because simply we have this huge complex that’s constantly stopping us from crediting creative work. It’s a classical Lebanese convention as well, to copy, and only lift the aesthetic value of the work since it’s exactly what we do best: we do not design, we ‘decorate’.

We were really counting till ten before judging the links we received claiming that the ‘Touch’ campaign is a copycat; we tweeted, shared and asked for feedback on whether the limits of inspiration are overlapping with copycatting in a way, and most responses weren’t very convincing.

Guys, the dollhouse idea and the one shot commercial is not really new, it has been there for a long time, done for several purposes, and since the ‘Touch’ ad is such an eye candy, we refused to judge it as a copy simply because it was based on a concept (in a new world) and not a floating visual idea that’s forced into something else. That was when we received the ‘Zain’ commercial, knowing that ‘Zain’ and ‘Touch’ are practically one company (one manages the other or something like that). But guys, ‘Carrier Air conditioners” is just way too similar, especially the ending part.

While some called it a ‘Remix’ job (check this link) and insisting on the very well done ‘Touch’ ad, others still can’t but discredit JWT Beirut, and that’s enough proof on how things go in the advertising field in Lebanon, as said by our dearest tweep: ‘when it’s good it’s great and when it’s bad you’re fucked!”

  1. TC17 said:

    Great execution and art direction without a doubt. “Inspired?” most definitely.

  2. EsteemedAdCritic said:

    I can’t believe how uninformed some people are. This is really just a standard filming technique like aerial shot, flashback, panorama… It’s not that distinctive or exclusive to a certain director. If two commercials were shot underwater, would they be considered copycats?

    I think the number one threat to the advertising industry is not copycats, but people who use the term “copycat” too loosely.

  3. josef said:

    I don’t blame JWT at all… in fact the insight is correct.
    I do blame the director for adopting the copycat strategy… again!
    as I said before, it is not the first time Ali Ali gets “inspired” from another work.

    in any case, this is sad, and I feel really bad for the agency, they have nothing to be ashamed of. The only mistake they did is probably trusting “blindly” Ali Ali, they should have done the digging exercise before shooting the commercial.

    • EsteemedAdCritic said:

      ^ a live example.

    • TC17 said:

      i dont think he had to dig to far…

      • Admin I said:

        yea, being directed by one person. Practice makes perfect.

    • AdMonkey said:

      You don’t feel bad for the agency? What do you think the agencies job is? Are you implying JWT, an agency, hired Ali Ali to create the ad for them? If so that is definitely something to be ashamed of.

      • josef said:

        actually… I feel bad for the entire industry after this incident…

  4. AdMonkey said:


  5. roy said:

    @EsteemedAdCritic here’s a live example for your reference , the Air conditioner ad has been removed from YouTube…weird no?
    Is CopyCAT still a “too loose” word to use ?!!?

  6. EsteemedAdCritic said:

    All I’m saying is that this is a common filming technique. It’s called a “long take”, which is a continuous shot with no cuts, photographed from a single camera. I can’t count the times it has been used in films.
    Check out Panic Room for instance

    Accusing a director of plagiarism when he’s just using a traditional filming technique is plain ridiculous. I’m done with this debate.

    • Admin I said:

      We’re not talking about the technique only. It’s a very similar approach even in art direction, it’s all based on several sets in 1 location, ends the exact same way.. it’s quite similar even though we didn’t really call JWT a copycat in the post; we’re still fans of the Touch ad.

  7. What’s with the “same technique” talks? I admire the fact that people know the kinds of shots and technique (good for you)

    BUT let us be kind of logical here: Whoever the “art director” was, well he should have known better (giving the fact that they named him an art director). why? because as an art director, your job is not only to deliver the ad but to also make sure that this ad is unique, whether it’s the same approach of shooting or not, the art director should make sure that the viewer will watch this ad NOT thinking “oh I’ve seen this before” and who knows maybe the viewer WILL actually confuse both ads (sarcasm intended)

    so do you guys still think that this approach was “smart” and “well executed”? Honestly, i don’t. Plagiarism or “getting inspired” just ruins the whole thing even if the result turned out great. And as a designer, i wouldn’t like my work to be so close to someone else’s work because that is just a big offense: that’s what “art directors” in this country should know.

  8. Monty said:

    @Nathalie K No ad is unique. And talk of technique is perfectly acceptable. This is simply a ‘doll’s house’ tracking shot. Nothing new.

    • Natsy said:

      the doll house shot is one thing, but people “crossing the track on the ground at the end of it”…. is another, obviously

      inspired by the Egyptian ad. But it is still very nice.

  9. andrado said:



  10. andrado said:

    Is there a joined promotion between TOUCH and CARRIER?

  11. oussi said:

    Actually I really like the TVC, and the music is extraordinary.
    This is not a campaign concept to judge it against copy cats etc
    Yeah the director got inspired by something he’s done before so what, this is the best way he interpreted the brief from the agency.

    This is good work from JWT Beirut regardless

  12. Creative Forces said:

    Guys, the problem here is not the technique. We all know long shots, continuous shots, aerial shots etc… and no one is pointing fingers because of that. The ad was not inspired from anything, it was a direct copy. Even the ending is a direct copy from the Carrier commercial, and simply put, knowing that Ali Ali is the director of both films, then there is no reason to be skeptical on whether it was copied or not, because it surely was. Ali stirred up lots of problems between Saatch and Touch last year over the 3.9G hit commercial (Bati2), and yet again he’s back into doing the same thing between JWT and Touch. Give it some time and the account will be on pitch again.

    • EsteemedAdCritic said:

      Was Bati2 a copycat too?

      • Creative Forces said:

        I have no idea whether Bati2 was a copycat or not. I was simply referring to the fact that the account pitch happened because of that production; this is no secret.

  13. Creative Forces said:

    One more thing, let’s say that this is the exact brief from the agency, it is the director’s job to alert the agency that it is 90% similar to something that was done before. Whether you are in the advertising business or anything else, this behavior is still the same, it’s is called Ethics, google it.

    • Admin I said:

      Makes perfect sense. Thank you!

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