Legs Akimbo…Spirited music pub hits back against miserable ASA ban of beer pong advert

Posted: 16 October, 2014 in ASA Advert Censor
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Read more ASA Watch at MelonFarmers.co.uk

also known as legs akimbo advert An ad on the Facebook page of a live music venue named Also Known As , promoting a beer pong night. Text in the ad stated ALSO KNOWN AS THURSDAY NIGHT BEER PONG IS BACK! . The ad featured an image of a naked woman reclining on a bed with her legs spread apart and her head pixelated. A star-shaped graphic with a hole in the centre and a small circular shape next to the hole were superimposed over the woman’s genitalia. Issue

Two complainants, who considered the ad was overtly sexual and objectified women, challenged whether the ad was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.

Also Known As stated that the ad was used to advertise the return of their beer pong nights and it was removed from their Facebook page within 48 hours of publication. They stated that they had not received any direct complaints from members of the public.

ASA Assessment: Complaints upheld

The ASA welcomed the fact that the ad was no longer appearing. We noted that, although the woman’s breasts and genitalia were not visible, she appeared to be fully naked in the ad. We considered that the woman’s reclining pose, with her legs spread apart and the crotch area being the focus of the ad, was sexually provocative and explicit in nature.

We further noted that the woman’s head was pixelated and considered that the graphics super-imposed over the woman’s genitalia was a reference to the game of beer pong. We considered the image of the woman bore no relevance to the event promoted by Also Known As. We considered that the anonymising effect of her pixelated head and the insinuation of the woman as an accessory in the game of beer pong presented an objectified view of women that would be regarded as being sexist by consumers. On this basis, we concluded that the ad was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.

The ad must not appear again in its current form.

Comment: Also Known As slams ASA for pointless investigation

16th October 2014. See  article from  morningadvertiser.co.uk

letter writing Marc Sylvester, owner and licensee of Also Known As in Banbury, Oxfordshire, said he had not received a single complaint about the promotion and insisted the matter was resolved months ago , yet the ASA insisted on investigating. He said:

The ASA seems to be an organisation that only exists to perpetuate its existence.

This was a post that was removed within less than 48 hours — before the ASA even got in contact with us. It was designed to be provocative but not offensive. I was made aware that someone had put the picture on the Facebook page and was complaining about it. I decided that if it was going to cause offence then it wasn’t worth it, so removed the post.

The ASA then contacted us and said they were going to investigate it and that could mean we would be forced to remove the post. I told them we had already done that so what was the point.

From then on we have had maybe ten letters from the ASA in which they kept asking for our side of the story. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve told them, there is no side to the story — we put it up and then we took it down.

This was resolved months ago.

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