Issue: Environmental Claims Code
Result: IN BREACH
The Panel considered that the imagery and the two statements combined in this digital billboard ad are an implied claim that natural gas is greener and cleaner than other energy sources used for cooking.
The majority of the Panel acknowledged that the advertiser’s intent was to portray natural gas as a cleaner alternative to electricity from the grid, however considered that this was not clearly stated in the content of the ad, and the only reference to other potential sources was ‘greener than anything’ without a specific reference to electricity from the grid that was as detailed in the Advertiser’s response.
The majority of the Panel considered that many members of the community would not consider Natural Gas to be greener than all other energy sources, such as renewables. The Panel considered the ad made an environmental claim and that this claim was misleading or deceptive based on the impression an average consumer in the target market would take from the ad as a whole.
Finding that the advertisement was misleading the Panel considered that the ad did breach Section 1a of the Environmental Code.
Issue: Code of Ethics – Health & Safety
Result: IN BREACH
This email ad featured a picture of a topless woman wearing tracksuit pants lying on her stomach on a bed smoking a cigarette. Underneath the image was the heading “Wake & Bake” with the text, “as we slowly come out of isolation, local talents and good mates Alice Roberts and Jana Kim caught up with sisters and mega babes, Sabine and Nakisha Jamieson, for a mellow morning and little wake & bake sesh with the latest Afends unisex goods in hand. View the full shoot and video on the blog today.”
The Panel noted that it was not clear from the images whether the woman were smoking cigarettes or illegal drugs, however in the context of the advertising campaign featuring the words ‘wake and bake’ and depictions of drugs the most likely interpretation is that the woman are smoking illegal drugs.
The advertiser’s responded that drug use is a common and enduring feature of life in Australia and that recreational Cannabis use is now legal in Canberra and in many places overseas. The Panel considered that whilst some jurisdictions may have lowered the regulatory threshold for the use of cannabis, smoking and cannabis use is generally viewed as contravening overall prevailing community standards.
The Panel considered that the ad contains a clear suggestion of recreational drug use through the use of the phase ‘wake and bake’, the photos of what appears to be cannabis on the table and the depiction of the women smoking. The Panel considered that the images are positive and aspirational and present illegal drug use in a positive light.
Consistent with its previous determination the Panel considered that presenting smoking or drug use in a positive or aspirational manner is contrary to Prevailing Community Standards on health and safety and determined that the ad did breach Section 2.6 of the Code.
Issue: Environmental Claims Code
Result: NOT IN BREACH
This television ad has two versions. One depicts a drawing of a house and leaves, and the other depicts a drawing of a baby and leaves. Both feature the voiceover: “Did you know there’s a paint that absorbs CO2 as it dries? Painting with Ecosphere is like transforming your home into a tree. Now that’s a breath of fresh air! Better get to Crowies! Because at Crowies we know paint”.
Complainants were concerned the advertiser presented an over-simplified view of the benefit’s that their paint can provide. The Community Panel noted the advertiser’s response that 45 litres of the paint product will absorb over 14kg of CO2 during the drying process, which is the equivalent of a 250kg mature tree over a 12 month period. In view of the supporting documentation provided by the advertiser, the Panel was satisfied that the claim was not misleading about the identified benefit of the paint as it dries.
The Panel noted the complainant’s concern that the ad claims that the environment can benefit from use of the product, however the Panel considered that the ad does not make a broad claim about broad environmental benefits from the use of the paint, only the claim that the paint absorbs CO2 in a manner similar to a tree as the paint is drying and found the ad was not in breach of the Environmental Code. Read the report.
Read the mid-year report on the most complained about ads in Australia highlights community concerns about discrimination in ads, as well as sex and nudity, violence, and sexually exploitative content here.
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