Adult shop posters falls foul of ad watchdog

Vibes Adult ShopPosters hanging in the shop window of the Vibes Adult Shop in Newcastle have fallen foul of the ad watchdog for being highly sexualised and having strong connotations of sexual violence.

Five separate images featuring women in lingerie were complained about, with the complainant arguing the posters “are obvious to the general public including children”.

The advertiser did not attempt to defend the images, submitting them to the Ad Standards Board with the comment “let me know if there is any problem”.

As the posters consisted of different images each one was considered separately.

The board found the first image – which featured a woman wearing a black PVC basque and matching briefs with her knees and wrists raised and attached to a harness/sling which loops around her neck – to have strong connotations of sexual violence, with the board saying the images presents violence in a manner not justifiable in the context of the product advertised.

It was also the board’s view that the pose of the woman, with her legs apart, was highly sexualised and not appropriate for display in a window where a broad audience including children could see it.

Images two, three and four were found not to portray violence, with the board of the view that image five was suggestive of sexual violence after noting the women did not appear happy.

The second image, which featured a woman wearing a black basque which laces up the front, was found to be mildly sexualised and was not inappropriate for a broad audience, with the board ruling the same on the third image.

On the fourth image, which featured a man standing between the legs of a woman who is hanging from a swing with her knees around her waist and her head leaning back to the floor, the board concluded that it was a highly sexualised pose and appropriate for children to view.

The board ruled this way again on image five.

Vibes Adult Shop said, in response to the complaint being upheld, that the posters had all been removed from the shop window.

“I will go one step further than removing the two mentioned posters, by not hanging a third (the poster featuring a man and woman) back into the shop window,” the advertiser said.

“I hope this resolves this complaint.”

Earlier this month Mumbrella hosted a video hangout with ASB CEO Fiona Jolly in which she talked about a number of issues affecting the advertising regulator, and the question of whether self-regulation is strong enough for the industry to adhere to community standards.

Miranda Ward


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