German carmaker Audi pulls advertisement featuring Hong Kong superstar Andy Lau from Chinese social media platform over plagiarism claims (VIDEO)
KUALA LUMPUR, May 23 — German automaker Audi was forced to pull an advertisement featuring Hong Kong superstar Andy Lau following allegations of plagiarism.
A Douyin influencer with nearly 400 million followers had accused the company of copying his work from last year, Global Times reported.
Taking to his account on Saturday evening, the blogger using the handle Beida Mange, blasted the company for failing to attribute him for the work.
'The poem was made by myself. Please ask the original author when citing them,' 'the blogger said.
Following brick bats, Audi apologised over the matter on Sunday and said the brand has removed the video from all Chinese social media platforms.
They also demanded the relevant companies to address the infringement.
The advertisement was produced and shot by London-based ad agency M&C Saatchi, that is in charge of Audi's advertising business in China.
A Weibo user expressed their disappointment over the infringement by the car brand.
'I have seen the video in 2021 [from Mange], and I watched the Audi video today.'
'I was so excited at first as I thought there was a cooperation between the blogger and the brand,' the social media said.
It remains to be seen if the scandal will affect the automaker's sales in China.
In the 2021 fiscal year, Audi earned a revenue of about 1.14 billion euros (RM5.3 billion) in China, compared to 1.09 billion euros (RM5.06 billion) in 2020.
It sold about 700,000 vehicles in the mainland during the period, making China one of its biggest single markets for the company in the world.