A circular for Wahoo Bar in Southampton, distributed on 16 March 2011, featured a topless woman with the word Wahoo placed over each of her nipples, wearing a small pair of knickers Issue
1. Two complainants, who had received the circular through their letterboxes, challenged whether the images in the ad were offensive and unsuitable for a circular which could be seen by anyone, including children.
2. The ASA challenged whether the ad linked alcohol with sexual activity.
ASA Decision: Widespread Single complaint Upheld
The ASA considered the image on the back of the circular, of the six women wearing underwear and walking towards the camera, was not explicit because the models were not topless, and there was nothing sexually suggestive about their poses. We considered that this image was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence in an untargeted medium where it could be seen by anyone, including children.
However, we considered that the image of the woman on the front of the circular with the word Wahoo covering each of her nipples was explicit and gratuitous as most of the woman’s breasts were exposed. We also considered that the way in which she was pulling her knickers down on one side was sexually suggestive. Because of the explicit and sexually suggestive nature of that image, we considered that the ad was irresponsible as it was likely to cause serious or widespread offence and was therefore unsuitable for an untargeted medium where it could be seen by anyone, including children.
On this point, the ad breached CAP Code rules 1.3 (Social responsibility) and 4.1 (Harm and offence).
We considered that the image of the woman on the front of the circular was explicit and sexually suggestive. We further considered that the text The Fuel Girls. AS SEEN ON PLAYBOY TV! from the guys that bring you FRAT PARTY A NIGHT OF FILTH & FIRE! … LIVE FIRE & STRIP SHOW! SEXY WET & WILD BAR SHOW. had sexual connotations. We noted that the ad also contained text regarding the alcoholic drinks that would be available on the night and their prices. We considered that by including those references to alcohol alongside the sexually suggestive image and text, the ad linked alcohol with sexual activity.
On this point, the ad breached CAP Code rule 18.5 (Alcohol).