Dave Trott’s controversial poster for Talk Radio, which used an
obscene gesture to comment on Alan Shearer’s transfer value, has been
banned by advertising watchdogs.
Thirty-three complaints were made to the Advertising Standards Authority
about the ad, part of a pounds 2 million drive to establish the national
Walsh Trott Chick Smith ran the risk of censure when it produced the
poster, inspired by Shearer’s world record-breaking transfer from
Blackburn Rovers to Newcastle United last summer.
The ad carried the line, ’pounds 15 million for Shearer’, and featured
two hands - one giving the thumbs-up with the caption ’good buy’, the
other making a ’wanker’ gesture together with the words ’good bye’.
Talk Radio defended the poster, claiming that it represented two sides
of an argument and that its interpretation was up to individuals.
But the ASA ruled that the implication of the poster was well understood
and ordered that it should be withdrawn because it was offensive.
Three hi-tech companies have also been carpeted by the ASA for ads that
either used violent imagery or were sexually offensive.
The 3DO Company was ordered to withdraw a BDDH-produced magazine ad for
a computer game featuring a pair of testicles on a bloodstained
At the same time, Advanced Logic Research (UK) has been warned about an
execution targeted at technical managers of computer networks, which
showed the top half of a naked woman on a computer screen and the
headline, ’Spend your wad on this’.
The ASA also condemned Gametek, the computer games manufacturer, for its
light-hearted attitude to the use of illegal drugs in an ad in PC Zone
magazine. The ad showed a man sitting on a pile of skeletons and holding
a hypodermic needle. It asked: ’Are you the crack pilot the population
is dying for?’
Meanwhile, Oecumuse, a company specialising in religious music, is the
unlikely subject of an ASA ticking-off for an ad promoting books with
titles such as What a Swell Organ you Have. The ad appeared in Church