ITC orders Euro RSCG's Yahoo! ad taken off air

The Independent Television Commission has suspended transmission of the latest TV ad for the internet search engine Yahoo! amid claims that it is homophobic.

The Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper spot shows a naked bridegroom waking up on the morning after his stag party chained to a tree. As he turns around he sees that a camply dressed man walking his dog is eyeing up his rear.

The voiceover says: "You can't trust the kindness of strangers."

A spokesman for the ITC said the regulatory body had received 15 complaints from viewers claiming the ad was "offensive to minorities" and the ITC was minded to agree.

The ITC has been in discussion with the BACC, which had pre-vetted the commercial, and they jointly decided that the spot should be pulled.

The spokesman added that the ad was still being investigated, although no ruling had yet been made. If the ITC rules against the ad, which was written by Euro RSCG's executive creative director, Mark Wnek, it will be banned from further future showings permanently.

Separately, more than 50 viewers have complained that the latest Clemmow Hornby Inge TV ad for the Carphone Warehouse makes light of the serious matter of cruelty to animals.

The ad is a parody of the charity ads telling people not to buy dogs as Christmas presents and is designed to show the after-sales service that Carphone Warehouse offers.

The ad uses an adaptation of the National Canine Defence League's famous line, saying "a phone is for life, not just for Christmas". Because of this similarity, the BACC took the unusual move of ensuring that CHI secured prior permission from the RSPCA and the NCDL before approving the campaign.

The spokesman said the ad had not been suspended but the ITC had received 58 complaints in less than two weeks.

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