The One Ad You Wouldn't Expect In Times Square

Times Square is one of the weirdest destination spots in America — after all, there's nothing really there, just lots of people and lots of advertisements blaring at each other in some never-ending positive feedback loop. But it seems that at least one type of advertisement isn't welcome in America's interactive shrine to capitalism: Pornhub's SFW Times Square billboard was taken down after just one day. Tough luck, guys.

Pornhub is one of the world's largest porn websites, and sees about 44 million visitors everyday. But traffic and respectability aren't really the same thing, and this billboard, which went up on Tuesday, marked the company's first attempt at off-line advertising. Unfortunately, the "go big or go home" mentality might have been admirable, but ultimately seems to have backfired. As best anyone can tell, it seems that the Doubletree Hotel, which occupies the building adjacent to the billboard, complained and had the ad removed.

Which actually might be kind of hypocritical, considering how many people inside the Doubletree Hotel probably take advantage of Pornhub's services every day. I mean, you're a hotel; it's a little late to worry about being associated with sex.

However, this is the age of the Internet, so even though the billboard has been removed from Times Square, it lives on forever online — which is really more Pornhub's domain anyway.

If you go to Times Square today, however, you'll only find this:

Also, don't go to Times Square. That place is nuts.

The ad — which yes, is a Beatles lyric, time to move now, please — was the winner of PornHub's SFW ad competition earlier this year. This particular submission came from Nuri Galver, a copywriter based in Istanbul. But there were plenty of other ideas about how to create a safe for work porn ad, as well. Would Doubletree have looked more favorably on some of the others, perhaps? Well, let's take a look at some other finalists.

...I guess no matter how you spin it, a porn site is still a porn site. Something tells me people would have complained regardless. Even though, as studies have shown, being conservative on social issues like pornography doesn't actually mean you consume less porn.

Not to be discouraged by the set back, however, PorbHub is looking for an alternate location for their billboard. It'll be interesting to see where they land.

Images: @adfreak/Twitter; @PornHub/Twitter; AdWeek (4)