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Product Displacement

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The old fashioned way.
Companies pay big bucks for Product Placement, and popular media certainly appreciate the value of this cash cow. So much so that when products or corporate logos turn up incidentally in TV programming without having paid the requisite dues, they will be censored.

This mostly occurs in non-fiction programming, like News Broadcasts and Documentaries, where the producer has little control over the people and the environment, or Reality Shows. If an interviewee for a documentary is wearing a T-shirt with the Nike swoosh, break out the Pixellation. Before the development of digital image processing, stagehands handled this by covering labels on bottles, cans or boxes with masking tape or paper strips. This process, called "greeking," is still quite common, as masking tape is a lot cheaper than making the blurred area track the motion of the naughty brand name. Keep in mind, they did (and still do) "greek" clothing or other logos on people's shirts, too (often during spontaneous gonzo segments on nonfiction shows), and it's not very comfortable.

Additionally, old movies and TV shows bearing Vanity Plates with dated bylines might have these plastered over with the current studio logos in newer prints. Logo plastering can also occur if the rights to a movie or show pass on to a different studio.

Compare Writing Around Trademarks, Brand X and Bland-Name Product. Can also be considered a visual form of Smurfing if Pixellation or a Censor Box is used. See also Prop.


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  • British cigarette brand Lambert & Butler managed to do a strange meta-version of this with their long-running poster campaign, a Jeeves and Wooster pastiche featuring a smug yuppie type called Lambert and his snarky butler, using talking heads and speech bubbles with some witty banter in the style of a one-panel comic strip. The very last poster, released just before the UK banned tobacco adverts in 2003, had the duo's faces pixellated out in a manner deliberately invoking suspects on Police, Camera, Action!.
    Butler: I believe we've been outlawed, sir.
  • The "Taste of Glory" ad for 1800 Tequila features a man asking what said tequila tastes like, taking a sip, then having a brief Imagine Spot of three people winning awards before finally answering "It tastes like victory." The second winner shown is a boxer who has just won a championship. The belt she holds on her shoulder is the distinctive green World Boxing Council belt, but with the WBC's name removed and replaced with generic clip art of boxing gloves inside a victory wreath.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Code Geass prominently featured Product Placement for sponsor Pizza Hut... well, it did in the original. Pizza Hut was airbrushed out of the American broadcast. Apparently, the US division of Pizza Hut didn't want to support a show starring a Well-Intentioned Extremist terrorist.
  • In the first chapter of Cowboy Bebop, Jet finds a bottle at a thrashed bar. In the Japanese original, he says "Presidente? I'll take it"; however, since there is a brandy called Presidente Domecq in Mexico, the Mexican dub replaces it with "A bottle of tequila, eh? I'll give myself a little luxury".
  • Darker than Black: Pizza Hut featured prominently in the original broadcast but was removed for the English version.
  • In the Tantei Team KZ Jiken Note novels, Kuroki, Uesugi and Kozuka went into Kaisei Academy, one of the most prestigious schools in Japan. Their school is no longer named in the anime, only referred to as "the elite private school." Strangely, Wakatake and Aya's schools also get this treatment in the anime despite being fictional in the first place.
  • Anytime Lucky Star bleeps out product names, part of the name will still be left in, such as "Po**tto Monsuta", or "**cky! Po***!"note 

    Comic Books 
  • When Dark Horse acquired the Star Wars license and later got the rights to reprint Marvel's 70s and 80s run, the Marvel references were scrubbed out as usual, but the first few issues kept the references to original producer and distributor 20th Century Fox. When Marvel re-acquired the license and re-released their old issues, the exact oppposite occurred: the Marvel logos were restored, but now the references to Fox were removed.

    Films — Animation 
  • The Iron Giant had a scene in the script in which the Giant's disembodied hand watches Disneyland, with a spiel for Tomorrowland appearing before Hogarth turns off the TV. Disney wouldn't let Warner Bros. show a clip of one of their shows, so the animators replaced it with a Maypo commercial. The Re-Cut Signature Edition replaces the commercial with the Tomorrowland spiel.
  • From 1950s theatrical re-releases up until at least the first VHS tapes, older Disney films had any instance of the RKO Pictures logo removed however they could. Because it appeared within the credits themselves, this resulted in either the logo being plastered over with something else (e.g. a generic The End card in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), or the first few bars of the opening fanfare being cut out completely (as with the initial Walt Disney Classics VHS releases of Pinocchio, Bambi, Cinderella, and Peter Pan). Starting in the mid-'90s, Disney started gradually restoring the RKO logos to these movies.
  • An Extremely Goofy Movie revolves around Max competing in the X-Games that were popular on the Disney-owned ESPN when the movie came out, but when Disney Channel airs the film, they cut out all the ESPN references. Most notably is a blimp with a hideous gray blur over it.
  • Beyond the Mind's Eye features an animation sequence that was used as a Hawaiian Punch commercial in 1987. However, for Beyond, the cans have their labels replaced to read "Too Far Juice", named for the music segment it's featured in.
  • Yellow Submarine transferred from United Artists to Apple Records around 2012, resulting in the DVD and Blu-ray releases from that year forward removing UA's logo from the movie, and from the old promos included in the extras.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Adam Sandler's movies have such extensive Product Placement that most of them that get shown on TV have to be censored to remove the brand names for legal reasons.
  • British Airways has received criticism for how, in its in-flight version of the James Bond flick Casino Royale (2006), they have edited out the cameo of rival Richard Branson and obscured the tail-fin of one of Branson's Virgin Atlantic planes.
  • Grease:
    • The diner scene boasts blurred-out Coca-Cola signs. Sponsor Pepsi demanded that Paramount either censor the references to their competitor, or reshoot the diner scene, and the studio opted for the cheaper and quicker of the two options. It's particularly noticeable in one scene in which two characters are conversing in front of a rather large Coke ad. The print used for "Sing-Along" theatrical re-releases starting in 2010 covers that ad with a pattern matching the rest of the diner wall. Oddly enough, Coca-Cola ended up sponsoring Fox's 2016 live version of the Grease musical, which meant that for once, the diner really was coated in Coca-Cola product placements.
    • The prints used for the 1998 and 2010 theatrical re-releases made two different attempts at eliminating the words "A Gulf+Western Company" from the opening and closing Paramount logos. The 1998 print replaces the logos with ones from 1995, which read "Paramount: A Viacom Company". (Paramount did this again when remastering the movie for its 2006 DVD re-release) The 2010 print begins once again with the 1975 Paramount logo, but with the byline now reading "A Viacom Company".
    • The 2018 restoration reverted the Paramount logos to the 1975 versions, but also replaced the Coca-Cola signs with ones for Pepsi.
  • Coca-Cola and Mercedes declared their names and logos (including that of Thums Up, a local cola owned by Coke) off-limits from the movie Slumdog Millionaire because they did not want to be associated with the Mumbai slum colony known as Dharavi (Coca-Cola in particular objected to the use of the logo before a dumping ground).

  • Drugstore in Another World oftentimes compares protagonist Reiji Kirio's alchemical products to their mundane, modern-day Japan equivalents. His flagship product, the super (energy) potion, is explicitly compared to energy drinks like Red Bull, just with the names, logos, and mascots censored and blacked out.

    Live-Action TV 

In General:

  • Both Ace of Cakes and (in earlier episodes) Cake Boss are forbidden from saying "Rice Krispies Treats", even though it's a very well-used "construction material".
    • An Ace cake that featured a Jack Daniel's whiskey barrel and bottle was blurred out and not shown in close-up, respectively, despite the obviously elaborate piping that went into the label. Ironically, the cake was a huge honor for Duff, as the group that ordered it is considered "the foodies of foodies" and only gets food from established chefs or notable up-and-comers.
    • The Verizon store sign to the right of the Cake Boss bakery is always blurred out.
  • Some reruns and many DVD releases of certain TV shows replace songs used as background music with generic tunes to avoid paying royalties, two of the more infamous examples being WKRP in Cincinnati, and Happy Days on DVD from Season Two on.
  • A lot of Korean Drama has this:
    • The cars in You Are Beautiful are current model Audi's with duct tape over the grill logo. Also certain brands are pixelated in the shopping mall and on clothing.
    • In Oh! My Lady the car logos are also covered.
  • Jimmy Kimmel once promoted his fondness for "Black Dot Ice Cream" — cue a Haagen Dazs jug with its logo blacked out.
  • In April 2021, shirts and shoes from Western clothing companies began to be blurred out across Chinese television, in support of a government boycott of companies protesting the treatment of workers in Xinjiang.


  • One of the most infamous UK examples: as a publicly funded body, The BBC is forbidden to advertise or give undue prominence to any brand, so any time a branded product is mentioned the phrase "other brands/services are available" will often follow. DJs and presenters often lampshade this. It's most obvious when a brand name has passed into everyday language: children's TV show Blue Peter tells kids to use "sticky tape" or "sticky-back plastic", but apparently, The BBC has since declared "sellotape" sufficiently genericised to be used.
    • David Tennant blocked out the "Converse All-Star" logos on his trainers when he wore them on Doctor Who.
    • Though Top Gear (UK) is exempt from this when referring to cars,note  a Top Gear-branded satnav was judged to have conflicting interests and discontinued, even though it was never mentioned on the show.
    • In 2005, an episode of Spooks had to be pulled for a rapid re-edit because an Apple logo was too prominent on a character's laptop.
    • Lampshaded and stomped on in one episode of Mrs. Brown's Boys. Agnes asks why there's black tape on the cellphone box Buster is seen carrying and he replies that it's due to BBC advertising rules. Agnes nods understandingly, then points out that from the shape of the box it's clearly an iPhone 4.
    • One episode of That Puppet Game Show involved Ian offering Eddie a chocolate bar, which just said "Chocolate" on the wrapper. The weird part was that the wrapper was purple and the word was written in a swirly handwriting font, so it looked almost exactly like a Cadbury's Dairy Milk bar.
  • Around 2000, CBS News used live digital editing to remove a certain other network's logo from its video screen at New York City's Times Square and replace it with its own logo.
  • Stand-up comedian Patrice Oneal had a bit in his Comedy Central special about the initial presumption by the media that the Washington, D.C. sniper was a white man, the punchline of which was "...downgraded to 'nigga in a Buick.'" The network cut out the word "Buick" because the parent company didn't want the name Buick associated with the news story.
  • Used inconsistently on at least one segment of Sandra Lee's shows on Food Network. A tub of Cool Whip had its logo blurred out the first time it appeared, yet in another shot, the editors didn't even bother.
  • ITV is not immune. Soap opera Coronation Street has a corner shop and a newsagent which have to have goods of all kinds on display. But because there are no merchandising agreements,note  the goods on display in both shops, right down to named newspapers and magazines, are from a product range which is uniquely only available in the Weatherfield universe.


  • Indian youth channel [V]'s mystery-drama Best Friends Forever? features two instances - Pikipedianote  and Jo-Jo Pizza (for local chain Smokin' Joes).
  • Zig-zagged by Canada's Worst Driver: the cars used for challenges are frequently identified by manufacturer and model (and in the case of classic cars, often by model year as well), but other brand identifiers are blurred out (a cup of chili from a Wendy's in season 7, for instance).
  • In an episode of Change the Day You Die, one of the people wore a sleeveless top with the sports logo blurred out.
  • British reality food show Come Dine With Me was for a long time sponsored by wine company Echo Falls who used a song, Camera Obscura's French Navy, as backing music. When the show changed sponsor, people contacted the makers to ask why they'd dropped the theme tune: it simply stick in viewers' heads as the theme music, despite the fact the official theme tune, a low-key piece played on Creepy Pizzicato Strings, was still there at start and end of the show.
  • CSI often features rather masterfully done props featuring fake brand names.
  • Deadliest Catch: Occasionally things are blurred-out or taped over so badly that it almost seems like a Running Gag. Two hilarious examples occurred on the last two shows in 2011: When Scott Hillstrand was looking at photos of his son they blurred out the Batman logo despite it being really obvious who the kid was dressed as (it was Halloween); a scene in the Wizard's kitchen had a cereal box directly behind someone's head, as if to highlight how poorly the box was taped over (imagine two thin lines going through "Cap'N Crunch").
  • Good Eats frequently refers to products with trademarked names without mentioning the names themselves (for instance, Alton Brown won't use the name of a chocolate-marshmallow cookie while a picture of the moon and a pie appear behind him), or brand-name products are parodied (like "B2 Steak Sauce"). In the behind-the-scenes episode, Alton even explains the process of "greeking". Occasionally inverted in scenes at actual grocery markets, where not only are actual brand names not obscured, but the actual grocery market's name and location is proudly displayed via pop-up titles (typically Publix and Kroger chain stores in Alton's hometown of Atlanta).
  • The IDOLM@STER.KR has this with regular name brands. In one case, the heroine is treated to what clearly looks like Coca-Cola, but to make it past the censors the can is sprayed in half.
  • I Love Lucy originally contained several references to Philip Morris cigarettes, who sponsored the first four seasons. When Philip Morris ceased sponsorship, old episodes had the references removed for syndication (eg, a scene in which Lucy dressed as Johnny Roventini, the Philip Morris bellhop, lost lines in which Lucy mentioned the brand by name). Some home video prints have them spliced back in. The original opening credits, featuring cartoon versions of Lucy and Ricky and a giant Philip Morris cigarette pack, were also removed for most of its syndication run for the same reason. These were eventually restored by The Criterion Collection for laserdisc release, TV Land for reruns (with their network logo replacing the cigarettes), and CBS for Blu-ray.
  • Lampshaded on James May's Toy Stories. While scouting the circuit for his attempt to build a Scalextric replica of a racing track which had been partly replaced by buildings, May visited the headquarters of Sony to see if they'd let him run the track through there. May introduced the company to the viewers as 'that company that rhymes with bony', and later referred to it as a soap company. He also ran into this in the Ireland episode of Oz and James. So they don't say "Guinness" too much when referring to the Irish staple stout, they fine themselves five Euros every time they say the name by accident.
  • In the reality show King of the Nerds, while there was plenty of blatant Product Placement, they did hide some things: they tore the labels off Mountain Dew bottles and the contestants were told they weren't allowed to call it that (in a behind-the-scenes thing online, two of them commented that they called it "green caffeine" and "green coffee" instead), and several of the challenges were essentially real games (Kerplunk, Stratego) that were given their own names and Nerd-ified. Also, oddly, the show's first official upload of the song "Talk Nerdy to Me" censored the mention of Star Wars in the song.
  • The original Knight Rider was forced into this by General Motors/Pontiac, who declared the names Pontiac, Firebird and Trans Am off limits. This is largely the cause of KITT supporting a rival company in the final season by praising Henry Ford's choice of colour.
  • An episode of Anthony Bourdain's The Layover set in Dublin, Ireland featured Guinness prominently, as any visit to Dublin by a heavy drinker must, but since they wouldn't pay to be a sponsor, the Travel Channel required Bourdain not to mention the beverage by name and even to obscure the logo when it was being poured. Bourdain being Bourdain, he pointed out the utter ridiculousness of this even as he mentioned "the black stuff." He also made sure to include a couple of incidental Dubliners saying the name, too (apparently that was okay).
  • An odd case on an episode of Live & Kicking: the Spice Girls were appearing, and Mel C was wearing a Liverpool shirt. Perhaps realising someone going around with a Carlsberg logo across their chest on kid's TV was a bad idea, it got covered up with a Live & Kicking sticker mid-show.
  • Mr. Show: The popular sketch "Jeepers Creepers" features metal-head Brian Posehn wearing a t-shirt for classic rock radio station KLOS with the logo partially obscured by black tape.
  • My 600-lb Life features many scenes shot in grocery stores. Often times, entire aisles will be blurred.
  • MythBusters does this all the time, either blurring the logo or covering it with one proclaiming the product to be "Mythbusters Brand". "Diet Coke and Mentos explosion" is a notable aversion, likely since those two particular brand names are intrinsic to the meme.
    • The European edit of the show actually uses the terms mints, sweets and candy. Mentos is never mentioned and the myth is called "Cola Cascade".
    • Subverted in "Superhero Special", in which Adam makes a reference to "Nocturnal Echolocating Flying Mammal Man".
      Jamie: What, you mean Batman?
      Adam: Yes. Shh!
    • Got a little ridiculous when the Science Channel picked up the show, as they censor everyone's shirts.
  • The montage at the end of the first episode of New Amsterdam (2008) showed Times Square change over the years, but with all the branding replaced with generic products. Apparently, Mom's Homemade Pies could afford large billboard space during the 1940s.
  • In Pee-wee's Playhouse, his picture phone has a receiver that is clearly a Del Monte can, but with the words "Del Monte" removed.
  • A show called Playhouse 90 ran in The '50s. One episode dealt with discussion of the Nuremburg trials. At the sponsor's request, all references to Nazi gas chambers were removed - the sponsor was the American Gas Company.
  • The Rangers' Volkswagen microbus in Power Rangers Ninja Storm has had the VW logo removed. Similarly, when Jayden and Ji made a cameo in Power Rangers Super Megaforce, the Harley-Davidson logo on Ji's Cool Bike had the brand name covered with tape.
    • Over on sister show VR Troopers, they had to edit around JB's Cool Bike being Suzuki-branded (and not his civilian motorcycle, either; this was his virtual-only Fighterbike/Skycycle).
  • The Price Is Right tends to have the verbal descriptions of grocery items used in games be generic descriptions without any brands mentioned, unless the item is sponsored and has promotional copy instead.
  • One episode of Profiler featured an exterior shot of VCTF's headquarters. A bus was driving by with the side ad blurred. Despite the short duration of the scene and the blurring, it was clearly an ad for dueling show Millennium (1996).
  • Sesame Street usually replaces all name-brand logos with their own logo, known as Nologo.
  • The British game show Supermarket Sweep used to do this with all the products on the set (a fake supermarket). The credits at the end of the show would include the line "Products supplied by Somerfield". The American version proudly embraced its Product Placement, being the game show with probably the most product placement of everyday items not named The Price Is Right.
  • Superstore has an entire clearance department to avoid this, but their fictional store has a fictional store brand at the ready if the story calls for product disparagement.
  • Canadian show Trailer Park Boys does this to pretty much every brand name on-screen.
  • The Ultimate Fighter prohibits fighters from bringing any clothing onto the show that has a logo on it, meaning the fighters primarily wear the UFC-branded gear they're provided for free.
  • Veronica Mars:
    • A popular orange soda brand is replaced with the fictional "Skist" using similar colors and design.
    • Veronica Mars also endlessly covers up the Apple logos on various computers with flowers, pencils, ect.
  • Normally averted by the copious amounts of product placement on The Wire, it is played straight in the opening of season four when Snoop buys Chekhov's nail gun from obvious Home Depot stand-in "Hardware Barn".
  • On an episode of Would I Lie to You?, guest Tracy-Ann Oberman claimed she'd never drunk a can of fizzy drink in her life. Host Rob Brydon produced several cans for her to try; as the show is broadcast on the licence fee-funded BBC, which strictly forbids product placement, they were clearly cans of Coca-Cola, Diet Coke and Pepsi, but with all the logos and text completely covered with a sparkly wraparound the same colour as the rest of the can.

  • Lots of hip-hop videos in The '90s were full of shirts, hats, and other paraphernalia that had to get their logos blurred out. It still happens on occasion; Pharrell Williams' sneakers are blurred out in Snoop Dogg's "Drop It Like It's Hot" (especially odd because there's a close-up of them at the line "See these Ice Creams").
  • Since rappers are prone to Product Placement in their lyrics, this can even extend to bleeping those names, with hilarious results. Digital Underground's "The Humpty Dance" edited the line "I once got busy in a Burger King bathroom" by bleeping out "Burger King" rather loudly and with a standard bleep normally reserved for obscene language. Incidentally, the sexually suggestive lines — such as "I'm still gettin' in the girls' pants" and "In a 69, my Humpty nose will tickle your rear" — had "girls' pants," "69", and "rear" bleeped out with wacky sound effects, such as car horns, record scratching, and a woman's scream.
    • As a result, people who only knew the song from its MTV play may presume the bleeped word is the F-word, and recite the lyric accordingly.
  • Another music video example would be Beck's Star Wars stormtrooper helmet being blurred out in the "Loser" video. Oddly, a year or two later, Weezer's "Say It Ain't So" featured an unblurred T-shirt with a Stormtrooper helmet on it.
  • The Kinks' 1970 hit "Lola", as it appears on the album Lola vs. Powerman and the Moneygoround, includes the line "Where you drink champagne and it tastes just like Coca-Cola". This was changed to "cherry cola" for the single release to appease the BBC. And it happened again when Robbie Williams covered it in the live-lounge. They later sold that cover in a live-lounge album too.
  • The Eurovision Song Contest forbids songs from containing references to brand names. Only one song has gotten into trouble with this rule, San Marino's So Bad, It's Good song "Facebook Uh, Oh, Oh", which got re-edited as "The Social Network Song (Uh-oh, Uh, Oh, Oh)"
  • Subverted in the songs used in the Dabangg movies from Bollywood—initially, Zandu Pharmaceuticals objected to the use of their brand Zandu Balm in a song sequence, but eventually, the song sequence ended up being a promotion for the brand. Consequently, Fevicol didn't try to complain.
  • Played straight in another example from Bollywood—a satirical song that lists out scams in different organisations mentioned Czech multinational shoe giant Bata (who have a massive presence in India) and the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC)- both were respectively replaced by Batate (Hindi for potatoes) and Beema (Hindi for insurance).
  • The radio version of the Amazing Rhythm Aces' song "Third Rate Romance" replaces the line "They went to the Holiday Inn" with "They went to the Family Inn".
  • Mitch Benn's song "Budget Air", as it appears on the album Breaking Strings; it was originally written for the consumer rights show Watchdog and specifically named the airline they were reporting on.
  • The only song on the They Might Be Giants album John Henry not to have lyrics in the liner notes is listed under the title "AKA Driver" — though the lyrics say "NyQuil driver" in apparent reference to the narcotic effects of the cold medicine.

  • Originally in Williams Electronics' Whirlwind, the boy on the backglass was drawn wearing a blue baseball cap with the Chicago Cubs' "C" logo on it. Soon after production started, however, Williams was informed that they could not use the logo. In response, stickers with the Williams' "W" were used to cover up the letter "C"; the artwork was later modified to use the Williams' "W" instead.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • Since the WWE lost a lawsuit to the World Wildlife Fund over the use of the "WWF" initials, new videos from old matches had the "WWF" logo digitally blurred or pixellated out for several years.
    • WWE and the World Wildlife Fund reached a settlement in 2012 that allows WWE to use the "WWF" initials in old matches. As a result, the old WWF logo and the initials "WWF" are no longer censored in archival footage. In return, WWE agreed not to use the initials in any future programming; retro-themed shows now use a version of the classic logo altered to remove the "F".
    • Mick Foley also relates an anecdote in his second book, Foley Is Good: and the Real World is Faker Than Wrestling, where WWE's director has him re-shoot a promo in a different location since there was an unnoticed Coke machine in the background, and Coke had just recently pulled their sponsorship of the show due to pressure from the Parents' Television Council.
  • CM Punk often has his shoulder tattoos (a Pepsi logo and the Cobra symbol, respectively) altered or outright removed in various posters/video games/action figures/etc, to avoid paying royalties.

  • Tobacco companies were the main sponsor of several major Formula One teams (such as the Marlboro Ferraris, and British American Racing's Lucky Strike cars). But then, at the turn of the 21st century, many countries began to implement laws strictly banning tobacco advertising. In races where these laws were in effect, tobacco company logos had to be greeked from the cars. Due to these laws, tobacco companies have largely pulled out of racing sponsorships. Even British American Racing, which was a joint venture between British American Tobacco (owners of the Lucky Strike brand, hence the free advertising) and Honda, got sold entirely to Honda as a result.
    • Some teams got quite creative with this - Jordan's main sponsor was Benson & Hedges, and when they raced in countries with the anti-tobacco-ad rules they replaced the sponsor logo with Buzzin' Hornets, using the same typeface.
    • An odd meta-example occurred in 2009: when Renault lost their sponsorship with ING over the Crashgate scandal, the team didn't have time to get everything replaced without the ING logo for the next race, so masking tape had been used on some surfaces to hide the logo. (Shirts, oddly, went unscathed.) As for the car itself, all the ING stickers were replaced by Renault stickers.
  • For its NASCAR coverage, ESPN had a policy which basically states that companies couldn't get free promotion by simply holding the naming rights to a race, they also had to pay ESPN. If you didn't, they refused to use the "official" name and used a generic title with their own sponsor instead (such as "NASCAR Sprint Cup series at [location], telecast presented by"). And this applies everywhere, on all graphics, voiceovers, even the ticker. Though, at least this practice also censored the ridiculous, long-winded sponsor title the Brickyard 400 got in 2013, Crown Royal Presents the Samuel Deeds 400 at the Brickyard, powered by (They just called it "Brickyard 400, presented by Cracker Barrel")
  • Ultimate Fighting Championship shows lots of clips of their fighters competing in previous events before shows. Many are from much earlier events that were sponsored by companies no longer affiliated with the company, or from other organizations they either bought out or got permission from that had sponsors that have never been affiliated with them. Thus their pre-fight packages often feature blurred-out logos on shirts or the cage itself.
  • Subaru's World Rally Championship cars used to carry a yellow "555" logo on a blue body as part of a sponsorship deal with State Express 555, a cigarette brand. When sponsorship by tobacco companies were banned, the team kept the colour scheme but replaced the 555 with its own logo, though early on, brackets were used in place of the cigarette brand "()))" especially in some areas with stricter tobacco laws. Rival team Ralliart also followed suit when Marlboro pulled out of their partnership with Mitsubishi in 2001.
  • Some college football forums do this to bowl games, in protest of the commercialization of the games. For example, when the Citrus Bowl was the Capital One Bowl until 2014, the game thread was as the Citrus Bowl.

    Video Games 
  • AT&T Park, home of the San Francisco Giants, has a giant Coke bottle behind third base; so does Turner Field in Atlanta, although theirs is smaller. Every baseball video game to feature these stadiums includes the bottle but either omits the Coke logo or substitutes with a fictitious one. Also done with the "Budweiser" roof plainly seen beyond the left field bleachers at Wrigley Field. That is either shown just as plain red, or with a different logo/color.
  • Counter-Strike: Source map "Office" (and Left 4 Dead via Prop Recycling) has computers with the brand "Beefy Computer". They strongly resemble Dell Dimension 4000 series desktops, which are ironically "beefy" for the standards of 1998 instead of 2004 when the game came out (or 2008 in case of Left 4 Dead). For the desktop screenshot used as its screen texture, several icons on the desktop were replaced with the default application icon or the one for Counter-Strike itself (Oddly enough, the icon for Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow remains fully intact), the Command Prompt is edited to remove the Windows XP copyright, and the Start button is replaced with a Fart button.
  • Shenmue has Coca-Cola vending machines in the Japanese version, replaced with "Bell Woods" in the West. The HD rereleases subsequently removed the other licensed brands that were originally featured, like Timex and Zippo.
  • Mario Kart 64 had parodies of real-world brands in the Japanese version, but this was changed to original brands in international versions.
  • Zig-zagged with Wave Race 64, which had ads for Kawasaki plastered all over the game (and Fanta Orange Soda in the Japanese version, which was replaced with the Nintendo 64 logo on the international release). Due to the licensing agreement between them and Nintendo having expired in the interim, Nintendo had to replace the Kawasaki banners with ones advertising various Nintendo consoles when the game was re-released on the Wii's Virtual Console. Then when the game was re-released on Wii U, Nintendo had renewed their license and had the Kawasaki branding reinserted, which carried over into its later Nintendo Switch port.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The back covers of the North American instruction manuals for Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 respectively feature advertisements for Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse and World of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. This is because Sega had the license to publish Disney games for their consoles in the Sega Genesis era. They retained this license well into the Sega Saturn era, when they re-released Castle of Illusion and Quackshot Starring Donald Duck for the Saturn in a compilation that was released exclusively in Japan, which is why the ads for Castle of Illusion and World of Illusion remain on the manuals for Sonic 1 and 2 in the museum section of Sonic Jam. By the time Sega left the console wars in 2001, they lost the Disney license, which is why Sonic compilations made since then that featured the manuals for Sonic 1 and 2 have censored out the ads for Castle of Illusion and World of Illusion.
    • The Dreamcast and GameCube versions of Sonic Adventure 2 include billboards for Soap shoes, shoes for grinding on rails which Sonic wears in this game. The 2012 HD release replaces them with Sonic Team billboards as Soap had gone out of business by this point.
  • Grand Theft Auto:
    • The original releases of Grand Theft Auto III had advertisements for Juki Union Special sewing machines and 3M's Scotchgard (a water repellent applied to fabrics) which can be seen in the Chinatown district. Later releases and remasters of the game had the questionable textures edited out.
    • Ditto with Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas which had a Spanish-language sign for a children's gift shop showing blurry artwork of Pokémon and Mickey Mouse, likely taken by Rockstar when they were conducting research in Los Angeles during the game's development. The Definitive Edition remaster replaces them with R*'s own Disney parody Fred's Pictures, Impotent Rage, and Princess Robot Bubblegum characters (The latter of which were already Expies for Pokémon's own Ridiculously Cute Critters somewhat).
    • Surprisingly, even though various real-world brands are not supposed to exist in GTA, this trope is usually not applied to the songs they license. The only exception is "PlayStation" in "A.D.H.D" by Kendrick Lamar getting backmasked, and that's only on non-PlayStation systems.
  • After Dead by Daylight lost its Stranger Things license, the Underground Complex map was removed from playable rotation, the relevant characters' perks were genericized and moved into the Bloodweb, and the chapter's Achievement System was redone with new, unrelated tasks to accomplish. Nancy, Steve, the Demogorgon, and their associated cosmetics remain available for any players who already bought them, however.
  • One of the collectibles in Ghostrunner is very obviously supposed to be a bottle of Jack Daniel's whiskey no. 7 whose label is mostly but not perfectly intact.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection:
    • The compilation features a section called "Turtles' Lair", which includes, among other things, advertisements for Konami video games. Franchises that Konami has lost the license to, such as Batman and Tiny Toon Adventures (both of which are properties of Warner Bros.) have their games and corresponding descriptions censored out.
    • The NES port of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Arcade Game featured advertisements for Pizza Hut, as the game's instruction manual had a coupon for a free personal pan pizza from the restaurant on the back cover. In The Cowabunga Collection, these advertisements have been censored. The coupon has also been cut out from the game's manual in the "Turtles' Lair" section.
  • SNK's fighting games from the 90s, such as The King of Fighters and Fatal Fury, would often feature advertisements for the company's Neo Geo hardware in stage backgrounds. Because the Neo Geo home console was technically considered a competitor to the ones produced by the likes of Sega and Nintendo, home releases of these games tended to replace the Neo Geo and SNK references with ones to Takara, the company that handled many of the ports. The Game Boy version of The King of Fighters '96, for instance, changed the sign for the Neo Geo Land arcade stage to the much more generic "Game."
  • Pikmin 2: The original game was loaded with real-world products that the player could collect as treasures, such as Duracell batteries, Skippy peanut butter, and ChapStick lip balm. These products also occasionally differed depending on the region, such as the Japanese release featuring National Hi-Top batteries instead of Duracell and Kyodo milk caps instead of Dannon yogurt lids. In the Nintendo Switch ports, these brands are replaced with generic counterparts, both to ease the localization process and because Nintendo chose not to renew the appropriate licenses.
  • Rise of the Triad's Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels include "Will of Iron, Knees of Jell-O (TM)." as a possible name for its medium difficulty. In the Ludicrous Edition, any medium players would instead have "Knees of Gelatin".
  • The North American release of Cool Spot stars the Spot mascot from the 7up commercials that were made at the time. Due to Fido Dido being the mascot for 7up in Europe, the PAL version of Cool Spot has all 7up references removed; the 7up bottle has the logo removed, the 7up tokens are replaced by red disks with checkmarks on them, and the UNCOLA letters in the bonus stages are replaced by VIRGIN.

    Web Animation 
  • Parodied on Homestar Runner Main Page 24, which uses the gimmick that the page is blurry.note  Mousing over the "Store" button will bring up a pair of glasses, making the page clear, but Homestar's shirt will remain blurry.

    Western Animation 
  • Beginning with the second season, most logos on products shown in the mailtime segments on Blue's Clues would (usually) be covered up in some way or another.
  • Justified in FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman, as Ruff's ego ensures that nearly every product will have a picture of him on it. (Even lampshaded on one occasion.)
  • The I Am Weasel episode "I.R. Good Mommy" originally aired with I.R. wearing a football helmet with an "N" on and waving a pennant with an "N" on it after coming from a football game at the University of Nebraska. When the University of Nebraska wrote in to complain, the entire cartoon was edited in reruns to digitally remove the "N" on the helmet and pennant (yet I.R. singing about Oklahoma being better than Nebraska was not altered). Some reruns that air on overseas Cartoon Network channels have the original version while the American Netflix has the edited version.
  • Early Peanuts specials included references to sponsors Coca-Cola and Dolly Madison in their opening and end credits sequences, which eventually became removed for reruns and home video releases. The music does a noticeable drop out whenever these cuts occur.
  • According to the DVD commentary for The Simpsons episode "Scenes from a Class Struggle in Springfield", despite Marge being allowed to mention that she had on a Chanel dress (the Jackie-O inspired suit she found at an outlet store and the replacement one she bought at a Chanel boutique), the actual Chanel name couldn't be shown (which was why it was covered by Marge's hand and by a tree).

    Real Life 
  • This trope went into action after Cedar Fair acquired parks from Six Flags and Paramount's park division.
    • Geauga Lake had to quickly remove its Six Flags WB/DC theming, as Six Flags has exclusive rights to Warner Bros. and DC Comics characters for their parks. All of the coasters had their names changed, and due to the sale being late in the off season, the former Batman coaster trains had their molded-in Batman logos melted with a soldering iron to remove them.
    • The former Paramount Parks had temporary rights to the Paramount-owned brands, so the parks opened under their old names the first year, and by the next year the Paramount movie and TV-themed rides were given more generic themes. The Nickelodeon-themed kids' zones were moved over to Cedar Fair's Snoopy theming by the third year.
    • The worst was Camp Snoopy when it became Park at MOA. The Snoopy-related theming was quickly removed after Cedar Fair stopped running the park, which led to some rides having Peanuts artwork quickly painted over. The sports bar had just the statues removed leaving a ball hanging in mid-air. The park has since become Nickelodeon Universe.
  • Disney Theme Parks also has this happen when a ride sponsor contract is not renewed. Generally, it leads to parts of a ride having branded objects removed or de-tagged.
    • The Carousel of Progress had to strip off its General Electric logos after the company dropped the contract to sponsor the ride. The large GE logos were removed or covered over with a blueprint logo sign, while the GE logos stayed on the appliances.
    • This was true of the Disney-MGM Studios in Florida until its name change in 2007. Due to licencing limitations, in certain marketing contexts Disney would have to refer to the park as the Disney Studios or Disney Studios Florida because they couldn't use the MGM name. Promotional videos advertising Disney World would edit the name out of the logo on in-park shots, leading the marquees to look something like "Disney____ Studios".
  • Some major sporting events (primarily the Olympic Games and FIFA World Cup) require venues with naming rights sponsors to be referred to under historic or generic names within all materials and media relating to the event. During the 2006 World Cup, most sponsored venues were re-named "FIFA World Cup Stadium [city name]" (the EasyCredit Stadium in Nuremberg instead used its historic name of Frankenstadion), and during the 2012 Olympics, the O2 Arena in London was unceremoniously renamed North Greenwich Arena, and Sports Direct Arena (to the satisfaction of critics of the very unpopular sponsorship) reverted to St. James Park. During the 2010 FIFA World Cup, this rule also applied to Ellis Park Stadium (Coca-Cola Park, now Emirates Airline Park), a stadium that was already sponsored by a FIFA sponsor.
    • When Dutch soccer team FC Twente became the Dutch champions for the first and only time in 2010, they got a chance to play in the Champions League the following season. However, they had to censor the name of their stadium whenever they played in the Champions League. The tournament is sponsored by Heineken, who did not allow Twente to show the name of a rival beer brewer during Champions League matches, which was part of the name of the stadium. This lead to their stadium De Grolsch Veste being temporarily renamed to De Veste while a big blanket covered up the Grolsch logo which is prominently featured at the entrance to the stadium.
  • The NCAA requires their championship venues to cover up all advertising naturally existing within the building (outside select 'corporate champions' such as Powerade, which is shown on the sidelines of events because Coke paid the money to do so), thus an NBA arena can often be covered up with tarps to hide the advertising. Though as most advertising is now done with digital LED billboards, this has become so much easier than it was in the 90s, where multiple parts of an arena had to be covered up with those tarps. The NCAA has also lightened up over time regarding professional/college team championship and retired number banners, which also had to be removed in the past.
  • After Pepsico (and by extension, Frito-Lay) left Indonesia and the rest of South East Asia, while Pepsi is out of the market for good (replaced by Coca-Cola in co-operating restaurants), the Frito-Lay branded snacks, Lays and Cheetos, have to be rebranded with Indofood's (which was their licensors) own brands Chitato and Chiki as their "Lite" and "Twist" variants, respectively.


Video Example(s):


Top Gear plays P********y

The hosts of Top Gear do a very token job of not naming the game Pictionary on the publicly-funded BBC.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / ProductDisplacement

Media sources: