Scare campaign for cab company dropped after 3000 complaints

A controversial campaign for Victorian taxi booking service 13 CABS has been axed after a number of complaints to the Advertising Standards Bureau.  An online petition protesting against the ads gained over 3000 signatories over the weekend.

Taxi campaign banned

The campaign was intended to warn against Victoria’s proposed increased number of hire cars available to passengers, by claiming that women were at risk of sexual assault and rape if they didn’t use a service such as 13CABS’ own. The ads featured graphic imagery and is similar to a campaign by the same name running in London where a number of women have been sexually assaulted after taking unmarked and illegal cabs.

Jane Quinlan, who began the campaign on said in her petition: ” I am troubled by their obvious exploitation of the genuine concern for women’s safety.”

The taxi company’s Facebook page has been swamped with complaints from angry customers.

Taxi company complaints Facebook

The “Cabwise” campaign by M&C Saatchi, London:

The London Cabwise campaign

The London Cabwise campaign


  1. Offal Spokesperson
    26 Jun 12
    3:45 pm

  2. Now if only they could do something to get the 1980’s “scare tactic” campaigns about road safety etc off the air.

    Seriously, does anyone think they still (if they ever did) work. Its time for someone to develop a new idea about speeding/seatbelts/drink driving/texting… that doesnt includes slow motion crashes and loud noises.

  3. Rebecca
    26 Jun 12
    4:38 pm

  4. I’m amazed we haven’t had the same furore over stopping of Metcards. Late at night, trying to get a train home from Kensington, and I was unable to buy a Metcard. Without a Myki, I decided to stuff Metro and just get on. Others may not be so bold. Do they then walk home late at night? Or get an unlicenced cab! Just introduce licenced mini cabs like they have in London….

  5. Other Way Around
    26 Jun 12
    11:13 pm

  6. How about the same campaign reversed – i.e.:


    Now THAT’S a campaign I would get behind.

  7. perfect
    29 Jun 12
    2:06 am

  8. What a cheek! There have been many cases of woman in cabs around Australia being raped, sexually assaulted or simply touched or questioned inappropiately and the cab companies, particularly those in Victoria, did little or nothing about it! They continued for years employing (borderline racist part moderated by Mumbrella)! The answer is to pay the drivers more (and pay less for the license) and get Australian drivers back into the cabs!

    So many people, especially woman, are too scared to use a regular cab in Melbourne… and who can blame them! Oh yea, and what about the woman who were bashed by cab drivers or who had to jump out of the cab for fear of being raped?