Discrimination is a bigger reason to complain about ads than sex for the first time

kari traad sheer ewe

Banned for objectification

Discrimination or vilification was the main reason for people to complain to the Ad Standards Bureau last year.

28.5 per cent of complaints were for this reason, up from 20.7 per cent in 2011.

An ad for Lynx was believed to discriminate against the elderly, Libra Tampons was said to mock transgender people and New Idea was deemed by some to be offensive to the Amish community.

Discrimination was a more sensitive issue than sex, sexuality or nudity for the first time.

The reason for this because is because the ASB introduced a new code – for objectification – this year.

14 per cent of complaints were for objectification, some of which were directed against an ad for livestock service Shear Ewe, which featured a scantily clad woman being sheered, and was banned.

Sex or nudity accounted for 23.4 per cent of all gripes.

Complaints about bad language doubled, while complaints about violence dropped.

TV ads drew the most complaints – 65.5 per cent, up from 44.2 per cent.

The internet and social media was the second most complained about medium. The ASB introduced a new category for social media in 2012, with social media drawing 2.6 per cent of all complaints; internet advertising accounted for 7.8 per cent of complaints.

Complaints about billboard ads fell massively, from 26.4 per cent in 2011 to 4.8 per cent.

Other mediums attracting complaints included print (5 per cent), radio (4.1 per cent), pay TV (2.9 per cent), poster (1.9 per cent), cinema (1.4 per cent) and direct mail (1.2 per cent).

More men are complaining than ever.

Complaints from men were up nine per cent in 2012 compared to 2011, to 39.6 per cent of total complaints.

Complaints from women fell from 68.5 per cent in 2011 to 59.1 per cent in 2012.


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