Monday, 9 December 2019
Culture Pop Culture

Consumer complaints amounting to advertising censorship

I’ve read many articles recently related to consumer complaints about advertising content.  The Advertising Standards Authority must have their hands full with some silly complaints.

Now, everyone has the freedom of speech to express their dissatisfaction with commercial advertisements, and some advertisements may be extremely offensive or seriously in breach of “truth in advertising”, but others are just downright nonsense.  It makes you wonder if these people have no sense of humour or so goaded by envy that they feel they must need complain.  What do they do with their days besides sitting in front of the TV?

I refer to the latest complaints regarding the Duffy Coke ads.  I have not seen the commercial, but the nature of the complaint was ridiculous. Watch my eyes as they execute a perfect-10 arch from left to right.  Maybe it’s my American mentality, but when we see things that we know cannot and does not happen in real life, we just shrug it off and laugh.  We might say, “That’s a stupid commercial”, but we do not call up the advertising watchdog and register a complaint.  Not unless there is something extremely offensive or inappropriate.

With all these complaints, it seems like we are approaching a state of censorship.  Yet, the censorship does not appear to address the more serious issues that we face every day, but silly nonsense that any logical mind can dismiss.  The good thing is that the ASA is able to discern silliness and dismiss nonsensical complaints.  However, it is still time-consuming and unnecessary

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