New Decisions: Location Influences Acceptability Threshold

The following decisions have been published:

Location an important factor for Billboard Advertising

A billboard advertisement for the BurgerFuel Bastard burger showed a photo of the burger with the word “Bastard” and the phrase “A punch in the face with a fistful of flavour” written above it.
The Complainant was concerned with the explicit language used on the billboard, particularly considering the proximity to a primary school.

The Advertiser accepted the location of the advertisement was not ideal. The advertisement had been removed as the advertising campaign had now ended. The Advertiser said in future, where any of their advertising content is ‘at all edgy’ they will consider what is located nearby.

Given the Advertiser’s co-operative engagement with the process, the fact the advertisement has been removed, and the Advertiser’s commitment to reviewing the placement of future advertisements, the Chair said that it would serve no further purpose to place the matter before the Complaints Board. The Chair ruled the complaint was Settled.

Different Thresholds for Internet and Footpath Advertisements

A drawing of a woman sitting with a glass of wine and smoking a cigarette was used in Facebook, website and sandwich board advertisements for Teddy’s Bar. The sandwich board advertisement was located outside Teddy’s Bar and was visible from the footpath.

Complainants queried the legality of an advertisement that featured a woman smoking and were also concerned about it being viewed by children.

The Advertiser rejected the complaint saying while they understand that people might take offence to such an image, they are advertising their restaurant, not selling cigarettes.

A majority of the Complaints Board agreed the image in the sandwich board advertisement promoted smoking with drinking alcohol and had not been placed with a due sense of social responsibility. The Complaints Board agreed unanimously that the Facebook and website advertisements were not in breach of the Code of Ethics. This was due to the placement of the advertisements, which could only be seen by those who chose to visit the Facebook page or website for Teddy’s Bar.

In accordance with the majority, the Complaints Board ruled to Uphold the complaint, in part and Not Uphold the complaint, in part.