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Adblocking London Advertising

Creative pranksters give London's Piccadilly Circus lights the adblock treatment


By John McCarthy, Opinion editor

January 16, 2017 | 2 min read

Two creatives have endeavoured to make it look like the iconic Piccadilly advertising screens have been the latest victim of adblocking.

Adblock Piccadilly

Physical adblocker

Earlier today (Monday 16 January), it emerged that the famous advertising spot will go dark for eight months as part of a revamp which will see a new digitised screen installed to be split between six advertisers.

Simon Carr and Tristan Lenczner, creatives at Innocean Worldwide UK, caught the news and had to act. In the end they plastered a guerilla adblock sticker afore the screens.

They told The Drum: "Once we got online we saw the lights had gone down, and this was quite a good opportunity for some fun.

"The lights are synonymous with advertising so we hooked onto the idea of adblocking. It was a natural fit and serves as good filler until the lights go back on."

The creatives, self-confessed "hypocritical" users of adblockers (except on The Drum naturally...) also posed for pictures with the placement.

Tristin and Simon

The lights have rarely been turned off since the second world war, with notable exceptions including on Winston Churchill’s funeral in 1965 and Princess Diana’s funeral in 1997. Soon a static ad will overlay the space, but for now, it remains adblocked.

The Drum has contacted AdBlock to see if the move receives its seal of approval.

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