Weekend! Good time to learn something ._. meh. But unfortunately I discovered some really funny faux-pas of wrongly translated advertising campaigns. Here are my favorites:
The name Coca-Cola in China was first rendered as Ke-kou-ke-la. Unfortunately, the Coke company did not discover until after thousands of signs had been printed that the phrase means "bite the wax tadpole" or "female horse stuffed with wax" depending on the dialect. Coke then researched 40.000 Chinese characters and found a close phonetic equivalent, "k-kou-ko-le", which can be loosely translated as "happiness in the mouth."
In Taiwan, the translation of the Pepsi slogan "Come alive with the Pepsi Generation" came out as "Pepsi will bring your ancestors back from the dead."
In Italy, a campaign for Schweppes Tonic Water translated the name into Schweppes Toilet Water.
In Brazil the Ford Pinto flopped. The company found out that Pinto was Brazilian slang for "tiny male genitals". Ford pried all the nameplates off and substituted Corcel, which means horse.
All of you a nice weekend.