A jeans manufacturer and its agency have been cleared of
glamorising violence by ad watchdogs in a row over a poster showing a denim-clad woman resting her stiletto heel on a man's buttocks.
Seventy-seven complaints were made to the Advertising Standards Authority over the Grey poster for Lee jeans, which carried the headline, 'Put the boot in.' But the ASA rejected claims the poster was offensive and promoted violence after Lee argued it presented the image of a woman in control and reflected the prevailing mood of 'girl power'.
At the same time, the ASA has found the Japanese carmaker, Nissan, not guilty of sexism and promoting violence in a poster featuring a man clutching his crotch in pain and carrying the headline, 'The Micra. Ask before you borrow it.' The authority ruled that the humour was slapstick
and unlikely to cause serious offence.
But it has carpeted Panasonic and its agency, McCann-Erickson, for
encouraging anti-social behaviour with an ad for a car stereo boasting
it 'packs 200 watts of raw, ear-bleeding power'.
It has also issued a warning to Elida Faberge about misleading claims
following a complaint from Gillette about an Ammirati Puris Lintas
poster for an anti-perspirant, which carried the line, '100 per cent
inspiration. 0 per cent perspiration.'
The ASA said the ad might lead some consumers to believe the company had
developed a product that prevented perspiration.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has been told to take greater care after a trade ad named alleged counterfeit software dealers before cases against two of them had been proven.
The Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper ad showed a prison wall with barred windows with the headline, 'Counterfeit software dealers. Here's your version of windows.' The ad included a list of seven companies below the sub-heading, 'Some companies we've taken action against.'
Microsoft said it had begun legal proceedings against all the companies named but admitted that cases against two of them were ongoing.
News Group has assured the ASA it has tightened checking procedures on promotions after the Mirror Group complained about a Sun front-page offer of 'Free signed Spice CDs' without making it clear that readers had to enter a competition to win them.