Extramarital website has bus ad banned

LONDON - Outdoor media owner Ratcliffe Fernley Media has refused to carry an ad for IllicitEncounters.com, the dating website for married people, because it was too controversial.

IllicitEncounters: bus side ad refused
IllicitEncounters: bus side ad refused

The bus ad has the strapline 'Marriage missing something? IllicitEncounters.com' and was due to run on 22 buses across London, Manchester, Liverpool, Bristol, Leicester, Nottingham, Derby and Surrey for five weeks.

Though the campaign, which was designed and booked in house, was due to go live next Monday (10 May), Ratcliffe Fernley Media said it would not accept the ad unless any suggestion that the site was "extramarital" was removed.

Adam Scott, chief executive of Illicit Encounters.com, said: "We have no interest in falsely advertising ourselves, so we declined. Our advertising team wasted months working on this, and we are understandably very frustrated."

Lisa Radcliffe, finance director of Ratcliffe Fernley Media, said: "We are not saying the site should not be advertising but we choose not to advertise that kind of activity on our fleets. We are proud of our relationships with our bus companies and do not want to upset them."

It emergedlast month that IllicitEncounters.com was on the hunt for creative and media buying agencies to help it with the tricky task of getting ads into mainstream media. A spokesman for IllicitEncounters.com confirmed it is still looking for agency partners.

Illicit Encounters.com claims to be the UK's largest extra-marital dating site with almost 500,000 members in the UK.

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