A product listing on www.ratandboa.com, for The Christy Skirt, seen on 2 March 2017, which featured an image of a woman from the neck down wearing a top that partially exposed her breasts and revealed a nipple piercing.
A complainant challenged whether the image was offensive, because it was highly sexualised and objectified women.
Rat and Boa Ltd stated that while the image may have been distasteful to the individual complainant, the Code stated that this was not enough in itself to find a breach. They said that there was nothing in the ad to suggest anything that would
otherwise breach any other parts of the Code.
They explained that the woman in the photo was the co-founder of Rat and Boa and she had undertaken the shoot with her own free will and expression of artistic license. They stated that it was unreasonable to suggest that she would objectify women
ASA Assessment: Complaint upheld
The ASA noted that the image was cut-off at the model's shoulders and her breasts were partially exposed, revealing a nipple piercing. One hand was placed on the waist band of the skirt, pulling it down to show her lower abdomen. We considered
that the image was gratuitous and sexually provocative, because the model's pose emphasised her breasts and torso, rather than the product itself.
We concluded that, by using a sexualised image of a woman, the ad objectified women and was likely to cause serious and widespread offence.
The ad must not appear in its current form. We told Rat and Boa Ltd to ensure that their future ads did not contain anything that was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.
John Sutherland is Lord Northcliffe Professor Emeritus of Modern English Literature at UCL. He wrote in the Guardian about the appranet 'banning' of Fanny Hill at Royal Holloway, University of London/ He wrote:
Many will have read the Fanny is banned story and thought: Those millennial nervous nellies, whatever next? My guess is that it is silly-season tosh. The book will be referred to, as necessary and instructive, but is not required reading. The
professor who is alleged to have done the banning is Judith Hawley. I know her personally. She is the world's leading authority on Tristram Shandy, a novel thought so improper even Cleland called its author, Laurence Sterne, a pornographer.
Now Judith Hawley, the academic associated with the 'ban' has responded in the Guardian saying that the 'ban' was misreported nonsense. She explained:
I didn't, as I was accused in the papers, remove Fanny Hill from the university course reading list for The Age of Oppositions, 1660-1780 following a consultation with students as the Times reported. It was never on the course, therefore it could
not have been withdrawn ( or banned, as the Evening Standard put it ).
But she does go on to trying arguing that the academic environment of trigger words, no platforming and offence taking more an 'evolution' of free speech rather than reprehensible censorship. She said:
But it would be wrong to represent all current students as refusing to listen to views they don't want to hear. Rather, we could think about this in terms of an evolution in free speech. Students are raising questions about who has the right to
speak, the right to determine the agenda, and calling for a diversity of writers to be taught.
After Muslims threatened to tear down a 100-ft statue of a Chinese god, authorities in Indonesia's East Java Province moved swiftly to
cover it up with an enormous sheet last weekend amid mounting ethnic and religious tensions across the country.
The Islamist campaign against the statue, a depiction of the third-century general Guan Yu, who is worshiped as a god in several Chinese religions, began online and soon spread to the gates of a Chinese Confucian temple in Tuban, near the Java Sea
coast, where the figure was erected last month.
On social media, Muslims assailed the statue as an uncivilized affront to Islam and the island's home people, and a mob gathered this week outside the East Java legislature in the city of Surabaya to demand its destruction.
Matilda is a 2017 Russia historical biography by Aleksey Uchitel.
Starring Michalina Olszanska, Lars Eidinger and Luise Wolfram.
In the twilight of Imperial Russia, prima ballerina Matilda Kshesinskaya becomes the mistress of three Grand Dukes.
Russian Orthodox Christians have protested against the decision to release a film depicting Nicholas II's affair with a teenage ballerina. Wannabe censors of Matilda have started a petition against the film.
Earlier this month, several hundred people gathered to outside a Moscow church, praying for the movie to be banned. Many of the film's critics see it as blasphemy against the emperor, who is still greatly revered by the Russian Orthodox Church.
On Thursday, however, the Russian Culture Ministry finally announced that the film had received official clearance for release. Vyasheslav Telnov, the head of the Russian Culture Ministry's film department, said:
There is no censorship in Russia, and the ministry of culture stays away from any ideological views of beliefs. A feature film can't be banned for political or ideological motives.
Nevertheless, the Russian Orthodox Church still exercises significant pressure in Russia. It has recently played a role in the shutting down of an exhibition displaying nude photos and the cancellation of a performance of the musical Jesus Christ
Two posts on the promoter's Facebook page advertising his Coco Beach Monday's club night at Lola Lo nightclub in
a. A post seen on their own Facebook page on 13 April 2017 included a picture of a female with her head titled back, her mouth wide open, her tongue extended out of her mouth and liquid being dropped in her eye with the accompanying text FREE
BUBBLY & VIP FOR GROUPS DISCOUNTED DRINKS & BIG TUNES ALL NIGHT.
b. An event invite for the Coco Beach Mondays club night seen on the complainants Facebook feed on 13 April 2017 included the same picture as above with the accompanying text Nice artwork 206 haha leaving to the imagination whats [sic] out of
The ASA challenged whether the ads:
1. linked alcohol with sexual activity; and
2. featured alcohol being served irresponsibly.
The ASA also received two complaints:
3. Both complainants believed that the image was sexually explicit and objectified women and challenged whether the ads were offensive.
ASA Assessment: complaints upheld
The ASA was concerned by Coco Beach Monday's lack of response and apparent disregard for the Code, and ruled that they had breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule (Unreasonable delay). We reminded them of their responsibility to provide a substantive
response to our enquiries and told them to do so in the future.
We considered that the way the model was posed with her head titled back, her mouth wide open with her tongue extended out and the liquid being poured out of shot, meant that the image was inherently sexual in nature. We considered that although
the exact type of liquid being poured in to the models eye was not revealed in the image, it was heavily implied to be alcohol. Further, the text contained in the image promoted free bubbly and discounted drinks available at the club night. We
therefore considered that because the image used in the ads was inherently sexual in nature and the text promoted free alcohol at the event, that it linked alcohol with sexual activity and therefore breached the Code.
The ads demonstrated alcohol being administered through the eyeball, known as eyeballing. This method of alcohol consumption had associated health risks. We concluded that the ads portrayed a style of drinking that was unwise and showed alcohol
being handled irresponsibly and therefore was in breach of the Code.
We considered the image used in the ads to be sexually gratuitous and provocative, and that it mimicked the style of facial pornography. This was further emphasised in ad (b) by the accompanying comment, which stated that the Facebook user should
imagine where the liquid came from. We considered that the image that appeared in both ads, taken together with the sexually suggestive comment that accompanied ad (b), objectified women. We therefore considered that the ads were sexist and likely
to cause serious wide spread offence.
The ads must not appear again in their current form. We told Coco Beach Monday's to ensure their future advertising was prepared with a sense of responsibility to consumers and society, and to ensure they did not link alcohol to sexual activity or
to show alcohol being handled or served irresponsibly. Further, we told them that they should ensure their ads did not contain anything that was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.