Banned in Australia - "Two women in lingerie leaning against each other"
Banned: Graphic anti-Halal pamphlet and a gun-toting Winnie the Pooh
A graphic anti-Halal certification group pamphlet depicting a cow with its throat slit lying in a pool of blood is one of several recent ads to fall foul of the Ad Standards Board.
Circulated by anti-Halal group Restore Australia, the flyer showed a cow lying on the ground with a severed throat, accompanied by the text “This Australian cow was fully conscious as its throat was slit”. A member of the public complained to the watchdog, writing that “blood all over the ground… kids don’t need to see this.”
The watchdog ruled against the ad, as it contained imagery that was “likely to cause alarm to the community, especially children.”
Warning: Image appears below
The ruling went on: “There is a significant amount of blood and obvious trauma to the cow as its throat is slit and the head nearly severed from the body of the beast… the words in connection with the image amount to a portrayal that is disturbing and would be alarming to most members of the community.”
In a response to the ruling, the group said it will change the flyer and the image will not be used again in its present form.
It comes after the ASB dismissed a complaint against a billboard featuring a dead horse, which it said constituted “implied” violence. The ad had previously been pulled by Ooh Media after complaints by the billboard landowner.
The watchdog also upheld complaints against a sign featuring animated character Winnie the Pooh pointing a rifle at Tigger, and a mobile sex shop billboard showing two lingerie-clad women leaning against each other.
SignCo Brisbane’s ad depicted Winnie the Pooh aiming the gun whilst fellow characters Kanga and Piglett watch. Complaints to the ASB said that “Given the circumstances around the world lately I find it highly offensive,” and the poster has used “an innocent children’s cartoon to depict violence (not to mention a criminal act) on another being.”
The watchdog said the cartoon did not soften the violent nature of the image.
“The Board noted that the use of guns in advertising pointing at another person or character is generally considered an act of violence and that the animated nature of this image does not lessen the impact of the overall theme,” the ruling said.
SignCo Brisbane did not respond to the complaints, but has removed the posters after the ASB’s decision.
The company behind a sex shop billboard which showed two women in lingerie leaning against each other has responded to the ad’s ban, saying it is a “family” business which strives to drive the mobile ad in areas with few children.
Club Shoop’s mobile ad was rejected by the ASB as “inappropriate,” after a complainant said they had seen them “on a truck several times during the school holidays… the truck is driven along busy roads and stopping along the roads near shopping centres”.
The ASB said the image was not exploitative, but wasn’t acceptable for the areas it was shown.
“The Board noted that the woman with the open shirt has very large breasts and that there is a significant amount of cleavage shown to the point of nearly exposing her whole breast,” the ruling said.
“The overall tone of the advertisement and specifically some of the features such as the level of exposed breast, the strap of a bra slipping down and the wide spread legs of one of the models and considered that this did amount to an image that was very sexualised and that the display of such an image on an outdoor mobile billboard did not treat the issue of sex and sexuality with sensitivity to the relevant broad audience.”
In response to the decision, the advertiser said “while we are very disappointed with the Board’s decision, considering that excess cleavage is everywhere in the media… we have decided that due to the high cost of fixing the existing image, the current advertising Billboard media was removed from our trucks this morning and replaced with previously approved media.”