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Regulation: Gingers and airbrushing January 16, 2010

Posted by snjones1980 in Uncategorized.

Thanks very much to Kieran Jones for highlighting two fantastic examples of contemporary media regulation.

First up is this rather appalling story about the ad campaign for Living TVs ‘Dating In The Dark’ (what will they come up with next?) which begged the question “how do you spot a ginger in the dark?” Virgin Media, who own Living, responded by saying that the ad was used to “challenge people’s perceptions of attractiveness and encourage decisions based on personality as well as looks”.

The ads received only 3 complaints, which was enough for the ASA to pull the ad stating that it could “be seen as prejudicial against people with ginger hair”. More info about this story can be found here.

Next is a coup for women everywhere – 60 year old model Twiggy recently appeared in an ad for some Oil of Olay eye cream airbrushed up to the nines. Two complaints (with an additional 700 from an on-line anti-airbrushing campaign) were enough to pull the ad on the basis that the ad could give consumers a “misleading impression of the effect the product could achieve”. Check the Media Guardian’s coverage here.

This one is a representation issue – does this advert reflect the truth of reality or a reality constructed in order to get its audience to waste money on overpriced moisturising creams?



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