Wicked Campers slogan that sparked petition ruled against by ad watchdog

wicked-campersThe Wicked Campers slogan which sparked a storm of protests from campaigners and finally forcing the company to change its marketing strategy has been ruled against by the Advertising Standards Board (ASB).

It is the 10th time this year the company has been found to have breached the advertising code over a slogan on one of its vehicles.

The slogan “In every princess there is a little slut who wants to try it just once” was the motivation for teacher Paula Orbea to draw up a petition after her daughter saw it on the back of a van, which led to Wicked Campers pledging to remove the controversial slogans from the sides of its vans and apologising.

Complaints made to the ASB said the slogan promoted gender inequality, with one saying: “Not only does it lack respect for women, it even seems to condone sexually coercive behaviour towards women because apparently, despite outward appearances and objections, all women ‘want to try’ all sexual acts.

“It is degrading and offensive to women. But furthermore, attitudes like this only go to further promote gender inequality and tolerance of misogyny.”

In its ruling, the board noted the Macquarie Dictionary’s definition of slut as “A woman who has many sexual partners” and the different ways ‘Princess’ can be used as a descriptor. In this instance, the board decided that most members of the community would find the use of both of these descriptors of women “to be derogatory sexual references towards women”.

While a minority of the board considered that focusing on a woman’s sexual activities in this manner the ad was employing sexual appeal in a manner which is both exploitative and degrading, the majority agreed that while it may be degrading it was not exploitative.

The board further ruled that the placement of the ad on the back of a van was not appropriate for a broad audience, which would include children, due to its sexual content.

It also ruled that the ad featured language which is inappropriate  as the use of the word ‘slut’ is offensive and inappropriate as “it is referring to women in a manner which is demeaning”.

The complaint was upheld.

Wicked Campers did not make any representations to the board in its defence.

Previous ASB rulings against Wicked Campers this year have included the slogans: “Chuck Norris needs a monkey wrench and a blowtorch to masturbate”, “If you love God, burn a church” “Get out ya tits and we’ll call it quits”, “Fat girls are harder to kidnap“, “Does your asshole ever get jealous of the shit that comes out of your mouth?”,  “Shut the f#ck up Donny“, “God I’m Fucking Awesome”,  “I was in fuckin’ Nirvana dude. Dave Grohl“ and “Half of life is fucking up, the other half is dealing with it”.

Miranda Ward


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