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  Free Balochistan may prove a little expensive for ASA...

The advert censor should stick to the widespread offence of the easily offended rather than get involved in the widespread offence of the internationally litigative


Link Here 4th December 2017  full story: Transport for London Censors...Advert censorship
free balochistan taxiIn early November the Transport for London (TfL) removed Free Balochistan adverts from London black cabs after pressure from the Pakistani government.

The World Baloch Organisation, which advocates for rights of the ethnic Balochs who live in the Balochistan regions straddling Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran, launched its campaign on London's black cabs to highlight the war crimes and human rights abuses of the Islamabad government. The #FreeBalochistan adverts carry slogans saying Stop enforced disappearances and Save the Baloch people

The British High Commissioner in Islamabad was summoned to appear before the Pakistani Foreign Secretary, Tehmina Janjua, on Friday over the adverts which they said directly attack its territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Unsurprisingly TfL were quick to get the adverts off their property and to apologise for the offence, and this seems to have done the trick for them.

The UK advert censors at ASA have also got caught up in international complaints resulting from the TfL campaign particularly as the adverts have now appeared more widely on advertising spaces that are not related to TfL.

Now clearly ASA don't want to get involved in the political content of campaign advertising so their rules are more about offence and honest claims about products. So ASA responded to complaints noting that the adverts did not breach their deliberately apolitical advertising rules. Unfortunately the subtlety of not breaking rules has been interpreted more as approving the adverts. As explained in an article from thehindu.com :

The High Commission of Pakistan and a member of the public had referred the advert to the ASA, arguing the slogan Free Balochistan was irresponsible and offensive to the Pakistani diaspora and an attack on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Pakistan.

In a letter to the World Baloch Organisation, which is running the campaign in London, ASA confirmed that it would not pursue the matter any further as there did not appear to be a breach of the code. The advertiser had a right to express their views, despite the issue of Baloch independence being a politically sensitive issue. The ASA's role was to assess what appeared within the ads, rather than making a broader judgment about the intent of the ad, or the political cause, being advertised.

The ASA Council considered that the tagline '#FreeBalochistan' was an invitation to find out more about a particular political campaign itself, and the ad itself did not make any specific claim that threatened the territorial integrity or sovereignty of Pakistan... the ad was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence to members of the public in general.

#FreeBalochistan campaigners were clearly delighted and hailed the decision by ASA to allow a billboard campaign by the organisation to remain in place. Bhawal Mengal, the WBO's London spokesperson said:

Justice has prevailed. The ASA has affirmed that our campaign is within the U.K.'s rules and regulations. Moreover it has proved that Pakistan's narrative to malign our campaign is baseless and deceitful.

Of course the Pakistan government is not so delighted: The Pakistan High Commission says it's reviewing the ASA's decision and article from thenews.com.pk reports a source sating that Pakistan High Commission will now launch legal action against the ASA.

A spokesman for the Pakistan High Commission said that the ASA's response has been received which is being reviewed. The spokesman said that further course of action will be announced soon. It is an ongoing matter and we are in touch with the ASA.

 

  Cheezy or Juicy?...

Silly strip joint advert winds up the easily offended Australian advert censors


Link Here 3rd December 2017
grosvenor pizzasA strip club advertisement has been banned from one of Brisbane's busiest train stations after the advert censor found it debased women (with thin crusts) comparing pizzas to breasts.

The poster shows two pizzas with pepperoni clustered in their centres under the words: Pizzas or Jugs? Grab both for just $25.

The owner of The Grosvenor topless bar and strip club, Jasmine Robson, responded:

Now I think this is political correctness/censorship gone absolutely mad. I am shocked that the ASB would determine that this ad is exploitative or demeaning to women in any way, especially considering there isn't even a woman on the billboard.

However the advert censors of the Advertising Standards Bureau  upheld complaints including that the ad condoned and suggests sexual harassment of women by suggesting that people can grab 'jugs' at the bar'.

In their ruling, the ASB noted the image used in the ad was of a picture of pizzas with strategically placed pepperoni for the purpose of creating the impression of breasts with pronounced nipples. The Board considered the use of the term pizzas or jugs and noted that the colloquial definition for jugs can include breasts.

The ASB found that the representation of womens' breasts as pizzas did reduce women to an object which was exploitative by way of purposefully debasing women. In addition, the promotion of being able to grab the deal at a bargain price was degrading by lowering in character and quality women in general, the ASB found.

 

  Lamb's off...

Australia's advert censor decides to ban amusing religious dinner party advert at the second attempt


Link Here 1st December 2017  full story: Advert Censorship in Australia...Advertising Standards Board
lamb advert video Australia's advert censors have changed their mind over a lamb marketing advert and have now banned the advert.

The Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has reversed its decision on Meat and Livestock Australia's lamb ad, after an independent review found it had breached the advertising code.

The ad, which featured religious gods and prophets, including Hindu god Ganesha sharing a BBQ lamb meal, received more than 200 complaints, including one from the High Commission of India in Australia, which claimed the ad was offensive and hurting religious sentiments.

The ASB originally cleared the ad declaring it had not breached its code.

An independent review by the ASB found the original ruling was an error and cited substantial flaws with the initial decision, which found the ad was lighthearted and humorous and did not breach the advertising standards code.

The review claimed Meat and Livestock Australia gave inadequate consideration to how seriously some Australians take their religious views and determined the ad had breached the code, recommending the ad be removed.

 

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