TikTok video advertising beer snorkel breaches Ad Standards

A TikTok video has breached Ad Standards for the first time, with beer snorkel brand Only Chug drawing complaints and eventually ruled to have breached the Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) Code of Ethics.

The video features a man sitting in a bathtub attempting to drink a Vodka Cruiser as fast as possible, using Only Chug’s beer snorkel, and bragging through a caption that his time was 2.56 seconds.

A sample of comments received in complaint by Ad Standards brought up the fact that the video is being targeted at a young audience, on a platform used predominantly by those under the age of 30.

A separate Only Chug advertisement

“The vendor has created a TikTok page containing videos that promote dangerous behaviour using this device, including drinking while riding in a vehicle,” a sample of complaints suggested.

When considering whether the advertisement breaches the AANA Code of Ethics regarding health and safety, the panel noted the advertised product is a device to measure how fast a drink is consumed.

The panel also acknowledged that there is a high level of concern in the community regarding binge drinking behaviours and the unsafe consumption of alcohol, and that many people would consider the advertised product itself to be unsafe.

It also noted that the advertisement was soundtracked by the song ‘Faded’ by ZHU, which includes the lyrics “Baby, I’m wasted”.

The panel considered that the video of the man drinking an alcoholic beverage in 2.56 seconds in combination with the lyrics mentioning being wasted create an overall impression of drinking dangerously, and as a result, the ad contains material contrary to Prevailing Community Standards on health and safety.

The complaint was therefore upheld due to Only Chug breaching Section 2.6 of the AANA Code of Ethics. OnlyChug did not provide an initial response, nor did it respond to Ad Standards following its ruling.

TikTok has since banned the account, confirming to Mumbrella that the account was banned for breaches of Community Guidelines. Alcohol is one of several prohibited industries listed in TikTok’s “branded content policy”.


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