NEWS: Young adults happy to watch more sex in ads

Two-thirds of young people think too much fuss is made about sex in advertising and would be happy to see more of it, according to research commissioned by Grey Advertising through NOP.

Two-thirds of young people think too much fuss is made about sex in

advertising and would be happy to see more of it, according to research

commissioned by Grey Advertising through NOP.



The study, conducted in England, found 15- to 24-year-olds in the south

of England were more likely to approve of sex in ads than northerners of

the same age, and that women were slightly more anti-sex than men.



Around 43 per cent of young women claimed they sometimes found sex in

advertising annoying, compared with 35 per cent of young men. However,

almost all of the young women who found sex annoying in ads - 94 per

cent - approved of its use in commercials for products such as clothes

and cosmetics.



The report also revealed that recent controversy over gay advertising

images may have been overdone, with only 39 per cent of young people

disapproving of the use of homosexual images in advertising, and 44 per

cent of the young women interviewed actually approving.



The research comes at a time when Grey is holding talks with the Irish

state television channel, RTE, in a last-ditch attempt to save its

raunchy Lee Jeans ads from the scrap-heap.



RTE has come under so much fire for imposing a pre-10pm ban on the ad -

which shows a young Gypsy Rose Lee stripping off her jeans before a

group of appreciative males - that it is considering pulling the

campaign altogether.



‘Heidi’s jeans ad is too hot for telly,’ blazed the front page of the

Irish Sun recently, and ‘This is too hot for RTE,’ ran the Evening Echo,

both of which featured pictures of the commercial that was deemed too

provocative for normal evening viewing. The Irish Sun quoted an RTE

spokesman as saying the spot was ‘a real turn-on,’ and that it might be

confusing for children.



The Gypsy Rose Lee commercial, which is restricted to after 7.30pm in

the UK, is the first of a pair featuring famous Americans with Lee in

their names, as part of a pounds 5 million campaign for the jeans brand

(Campaign, 2 February).



The provocative style of the ads is not unusual in contemporary jeans

advertising, which has increasingly taken on a much more raunchy tone.

Levi’s latest campaign, ‘washroom,’ through Bartle Bogle Hegarty, for

example, shows the 22-year-old model, Anna Cristina, stripping down to

her underwear.



Levi’s commercial will not appear on terrestrial TV at all in the UK,

and will not be screened until after 9pm in Ireland because of the ad’s

sexual tone.



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