Lost in Translation

on May 12 in Flotsum & Jetsam by

From an article in the Guardian Unlimited:


Beer maker Coors discovered that its slogan “Turn it Loose” translated into Spanish as “Suffer from Diarrhoea”. The company immediately pulled the advertisements and changed the campaign’s slogan to “Won’t Slow You Down” which it said “better resonated with Spanish-speaking audiences”.


In 1996, Reebok named a new women’s tennis shoe Incubus. Unfortunately, Incubus, according to medieval mythology, was a demon who ravished women in their sleep.


The corporation’s slogan “Coke Adds Life” was reportedly translated into Thai as “Coke Brings Your Ancestors Back from the Dead”.

Ford Pinto

When Ford launched its Pinto car in Brazil, it was forced to rebrand the range after someone pointed out that “pinto” was slang for “tiny male genitals”.

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