New Decisions: Stereotyping Dads, Skiers Drinking And More

The following decisions have been published:

Advertisement Not Discriminatory Against Fathers

The television advertisement for Spark featured a young boy in various situations without his father present around Father’s Day. In one scene the boy is seen carrying breakfast to his mother with a card that said “Happy Father’s Day Mum” on the front. The advertisement concluded with the on-screen text which said “little can be huge” and the Spark logo.

Four Complainants were concerned about the advertisement discriminating against fathers, perpetuating derogatory stereotypes about absent fathers and encouraging parental alienation. One complainant was also concerned the advertisement was misleading and would encourage bullying of children without fathers.

The Advertiser said the advertisement depicted one of the many different family configurations that exist in society. They noted that every consumer would perceive the clip through a filter of their own experience therefore each emotional response was understandable.

The Complaints Board said the advertisement depicted a loving relationship between a mother and son, which included positive representations of other fathers. The Complaints Board said the advertisement made no suggestion of why the young boy’s father was not present on Father’s Day and did not present a derogatory stereotype of a ‘deadbeat’ father and was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence to father’s or people in general. The Complaints Board ruled the complaint was Not Upheld.

Skiers Enjoying an End of Day Drink Did Not Breach Code

The Billboard advertisement for Lion (NZ) Ltd – Corona Extra, showed a snow-covered mountain range at sunset. Skis and snowboard equipment were leaning against a hut wall, while some people drank bottles of beer. The tagline at the bottom of the billboard states “From where you’d rather be.”

The Complainant was concerned the advertisement linked drinking alcohol with the sporting success of skiing and snowboarding, therefore implying that alcohol consumption was linked to a more attractive lifestyle and was necessary for relaxation. The Advertiser clarified that there was a clear separation of sporting pursuits and the consumption of alcohol. The consumption of alcohol was not the primary focus of the social setting being portrayed and not all characters featured in the advertisement were drinking.

The Complaints Board concluded the advertisement did not promote alcohol consumption as a better or more attractive lifestyle because of the moderate alcohol consumption shown, the separation of sporting equipment from those drinking and the general ambience portrayed with drinkers and non-drinkers socialising. Crucially, the characters drinking beer had completed their sporting activities for the day, therefore negating any suggestion that sporting prowess could be enhanced with alcohol. Accordingly, The Complaints Board ruled the complaint was Not Upheld.

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