Advertising

The U.K. Banned a Cream Cheese Commercial and Car Commercial Due to Gender Stereotypes

The ads are the first to be banned since the new law went into effect in June.

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The first ads to fall prey to the U.K.'s new ban on gender stereotypes in advertising are tepid spots for Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Volkswagen. The law, which is enforced by the U.K.'s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), went into effect in June.

The ads in question were investigated following complaints by viewers that they perpetuated gender stereotypes. The Philadelphia ad features two men with babies talking about how good food at a restaurant looks while the babies go by them on a conveyor belt. The Volkswagen ad showed men being astronauts, setting up a campsite, and doing a long jump, while women in the ad were shown reading on a bench reading next to a baby stroller and sleeping in a tent.

The ASA said it received 128 complaints regarding the cream cheese ad and three complaints about the car ad.

In its ruling on the Philadelphia ad, the ASA states that it is aware the ad was done with a comedic tone. Yet the ASA still ruled against it because it found "that the narrative and humor in the ad derived from the use of the gender stereotype," and thus didn't lessen "the effect of the harmful stereotype."

Of the Volkswagen ad, ASA said:

By juxtaposing images of men in extraordinary environments and carrying out adventurous activities with women who appeared passive or engaged in a stereotypical care-giving role, we considered that the ad directly contrasted stereotypical male and female roles and characteristics in a manner that gave the impression that they were exclusively associated with one gender.

Following the implementation of the bans, Jesse Tye, ASA investigation manager, alleged in a radio interview that gender stereotypes cause real-world harm. "The types of harms we might be talking about are, for example, affecting people's aspirations. You know it might affect the career choices girls make or boys make," Tye told the BBC.

This echoes what the ASA claimed when the ban was implemented. Stereotypical depictions "can restrict the choices, aspirations, and opportunities of children, young people, and adults," it said. But as Reason's Billy Binion wrote, it's the ban itself that constricts choices, "as it limits companies from advertising their products as they see fit and shields consumers from ideas associated with wrongthink."

A spokesperson for Philadelphia parent company Mondelez International told Today: "We are extremely disappointed with the ASA decision. We take our advertising responsibility very seriously and work with a range of partners to make sure our marketing meets and complies with all UK regulation."

Geraldine Ingham, head of marketing for Volkswagen U.K., told Today "Just like the men, [women in the ad] are shown taking part in challenging situations, such as in a tent perched on a mountainside," and "embarking on what is surely life's greatest and most valuable role—raising another human being."

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  1. The British people should overthrow their socialist government and end this leftist bullshit. Amd since it’s not OUR government, I can freely day that.

    1. Remember this is happening under a government run by the relatively free market party. The UK has lost its way and this is as good as it gets.

    2. There are only big government statists in Garbage Island, be they “left” or “right”. One group is “FREE SHIT! EVERYTHING IS RACIST!”, whereas the other group are “FREE SHIT FOR US!” and worried about immigrants taking “their” entitlements. It really is a pathetic little statist race to the bottom among the resentful little garbage islanders. Communism on the left, and “muh entitlements!” on the “right” (other left). Everyone just wants to grow government to hurt the “other side” without realizing (or wilfully ignoring the fact) that it is hurting everyone.

      1. That sounds….. somehow….. familiar.

        1. Just like us… U. S.

  2. We are next. Do not vote for any democrat under any circumstances.
    Including Trump being the other choice.

    1. LOL

      As a Koch / Reason libertarian, I’d rather live with open borders and censored ads than with closed borders and uncensored ads.

      #VoteDemocratForOpenBorders
      #ImmigrationAboveAll

      1. Maybe the 1st. Amendment will someday achieve Superprecedent status

        1. nope, freedom of speech is subject to not offending anyone.
          freedom of assembly is subject to not belonging to a wrongthink group.
          freedom of religion is fine, as long as you don’t let that religion stop you from catering to everyone you disagree with.

      2. Yes, with you being a known progressive claiming to be a libertarian we knew that about you.

  3. Shouldn’t the ASA provide some justification for their claims that the stereotypes are somehow harmful? A lot of stereotypes are pretty valid. Not to all individuals, of course, but broadly speaking. Women really do tend to prefer care taking roles more than men. Men really do tend to do more risky, physical activities.

    1. Similar analytics aside, that take didn’t work so well for James Damore. But, yeah – I get ya.

      1. And, speaking of (though unrelated) another Google employee wrote a memo-to-all regarding his dissatisfaction with the company’s diversity efforts.

        1. Yikes. Another woke zealot who insisted his coworkers “discuss” the “policing of black bodies”. What he meant was, he wanted his coworkers to listen to him lecture them with BLM race-baiting propaganda and agree wholeheartedly with “his truth”. Sure if you want to have an honest conversation about police overreach, violence, and corruption that doesn’t totally warp the picture to favor one particular identarian agenda, then go right ahead. Noone wants to be lectured at. This reminds me of a rant piece in The Guardian by some similar zealot called something like “Why I Will No Longer Try Talking to White People About Race” which was a huge toddler tantrum, where he spat his pacifier out about “white people” “rolling their eyes” or not just shutting up and totally agreeing with him when he wanted to lecture them about how awful they all are.

          Having said all that, despite the overwhelmig suspicion of some degree of persecution and victimhood “complex” that this memo writer seems to exhibit (programmed into him), there probably is some truth about his coworkers being outright racists. It’s that liberal arrogance that leads them to obnoxiously be “ironically” racist or just convince themselves that the “real racists” are some white Trump-voting deplorables somewhere out in the midwest or deep south. It’s like what happened to Sarah Silverman recently. The bubble burst. The left eats itself but somehow it’s never their fault.

          1. Ps I have worked in places where people wanted to have poltical discussions but assumed everyone was broadly on the same progressive page. Outright falsehoods, vast generalizations, accusations etc often got to much to bear so I spoke out to counter sometimes and of course certain people found it hard to believe or thought I was joking or just being contrarian. My favorite was all the “oh Rachel Maddow, she’s really good. She’s got Trump’s number. She’s doing some really good investigative reporting,” etc. That worked out well, didn’t it. I like to keep it light and not get into political shit at work, but for the general progressive clique, “everything is political”. It’s a shame.

            1. “but for the general progressive clique, “everything is political””

              Well, yes. When your philosophy is that everything is the purview of government control, everything MUST be political by necessity, because it must be managed by public policy.

    2. Well, Comrade, if you can’t see the problem, maybe you’re part of the problem.

  4. Airstrip One is fulfilling the prophecy.

  5. i watched the dad commercial. I don’t see the stereotype. wtf?

    1. Well, Comrade, if you can’t see the problem, maybe you’re part of the problem.

  6. Next they’ll be banning alcoholic beverage and cigarette ads.

  7. “The first ads to fall prey to the U.K.’s new ban on gender stereotypes in advertising are tepid spots for Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Volkswagen.”

    Birkenstocks the new fave for commercial actresses!

    1. If I am advertising that my agency desperately needs more wet nurses to be hired… Would I be busted if most of the “model employees” that I show, to show the udder GLAMOUR of this job… were FEMALE, and not a ONE of them was MALE?

      1. You’re “busted” for your udder lack of sensitivity to gender stereotypes!!!

      2. “If I am advertising that my agency desperately needs more wet nurses to be hired… Would I be busted if most of the “model employees” that I show, to show the udder GLAMOUR of this job… were FEMALE, and not a ONE of them was MALE?”

        Hey, I got a lead for you!
        https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7362569/Student-no-idea-portrait-Bill-Clinton-dress-Jeffrey-Epsteins-home.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490

        1. “Jeffrey Epstein had a painting of Bill Clinton wearing a blue dress and red heels hanging inside his Manhattan home”

          Nice pic! I couldn’t find the Monica-treasured famous stain on the blue dress though…

      3. That would be exclusionary of men with lactating breasts.

  8. “The types of harms we might be talking about are, for example, affecting people’s aspirations. You know it might affect the career choices girls make or boys make,” Tye told the BBC.

    “Specifically, it might encourage girls or boys to go against the perceived norm, to buck the trend, if you will. *** aside *** Can I say that? ‘Buck’?”

    1. Hey, at least in the USA you can doe what you want.

    2. As in, I wanted to be an astronaut, but only men were astronauts in the cream cheese ad? Or was it the Volkswagen ad?

  9. Did you notice there were significantly more complaints about the cream cheese ad than about the VW ad?

  10. Such noble intentions! Such insane outcomes! If people find the ads offensive, don’t buy the product. Note only 3 complaints for one ad. You could find 3 people to be offended by absolutely anything. There are people who would object to showing a round earth, or children, or any mention of evolution.

  11. Hahahaaaa I can’t stop laughing

  12. “The Volkswagen ad showed men being astronauts, setting up a campsite, and doing a long jump…”M

    Clearly, not an ad intended for the USA where it would appear men are required by law to be depicted as blithering idiots, needing the help of women and children to do the simplest of things.

    1. But white men in particular.

  13. LOLWUT?

  14. Gender advertising is a very important to companies bottom line. If a product is not doing very well with a one gender then why would they advertise a generic add when they want to reach that gender. The would need to use a gender add to reach them. But I guess that they don’t want any manly adds or nor do they want any womanly adds. So these companies will just have to just loose these sales just because of some weak people don’t know who or what that are.

    1. And I guess they will soon ban gender-branded deodorant, shampoo, etc.

      1. And feminine hygiene products too!

        1. I fully expect to see big brand “unisex tampons” in stores within five years.

  15. Seems like intervening in WWII was a waste of good American blood.

    1. But we would have been deprived of decades of antics by the various Royal Twits.

      1. Prince Charles wants to be called Princess Charlene now.

  16. So, some young British girl, who dreams of being an astronaut someday is going to see a Volkswagen commercial and decide she should give up on her dream? “I guess if Volkswagen says I can’t be an astronaut…”

    1. “But what if astronauts get to wear really cool shoes?”

      1. With matching astronaut handbags!

      2. I hope they get them cheap on Poshmark!

      1. LOL
        NOBODY in the UK gets to grow up and be an astronaut because the UK has no space program. The best they can do is join Richard Branson on Virgin Galactic and be a space tourist.

        1. There have been some limey astronauts, including this one who went to space courtesy of the USSR.

          Communism; starving your own people, but sending some foreign lady to space.

  17. “embarking on what is surely life’s greatest and most valuable role—raising another human being.”

    Oh, man, did they just say that out loud? Twitter will raise a fit!

    Remember that Volkswagen was invented by the National Socialists – Kirche, Kuche und Kinder, don’t you know.

  18. Maybe the character “Pat” from Saturday Night Live can get some regulation-compliant work starring in adverts in the UK.

  19. On the way to work recently I heard the morning crew of the local hard rock station talking about a study of U.K. millennials who had never seen the show Friends. They watched several episodes and came away deeply offended by the stereotypes perpetuated. The crew, a mix of one boomer, a couple of gen Xers, and a couple of millennials seemed bewildered by this response.

    I have never watched this show, but I have never heard about anyone being offended by it. Does the U.K. have an even more ridiculous trigger level for woke SJWs than we do? Say it ain’t so!

    Haha

    1. Friends was over 20 years ago.

      Yes, there is much there that today’s ears would find offensive.

      But that is just a moo point.

      1. Don’t even let them watch Seinfeld.

        1. Anything before 2005 or so really.

          In the 80s, we watched shows from the 50s and 60s and 70s. Each decade came with its own set of unique ‘stereotypes’ or whatever. We never got offended. Like ever.

          There’s something soft about millennials. They’re all bearded and tattooed up to mask their insecurities.

          Grow a real pair already you pussies.

          1. I’m a millennial. An older one mind you. I fucking hate millennials. The truth is people my age range were originally going to be lumped in with the late 70s and called Gen Y, and that would have made more sense.

            People my age didn’t get trophies for losing in sports, could ride our bikes around, etc. In short, the millennial stereotypes MOSTLY just apply to the ones a few years younger than me. But the PC nonsense run amok is just too insane to bear.

    2. How far and fast the crazy has spread is the nuttiest thing. It’d be one thing if the most edgy, on the borderline of acceptable 20 years ago thing was “too much” nowadays… That one of the most generic, boring, non controversial sitcoms of the era is ZOMG EVIL! It is just mind blowing.

  20. So natural inclinations based on hormones and chromosomes are somehow offensive? These are the same motherfuckers that go around preaching about “science”.????

    1. Progressivism is war against nature

      1. It is remarkable just how in denial of medicine and chemistry they will go. I’d argue it’s certainly as scandalous as the right’s problems with climatology or environmental science, if not more so because the knowledge base Progressives are rejecting was more established than the newer developments of environmental science that conservatives struggle with.

        1. I’d argue it’s certainly as scandalous as the right’s problems with climatology or environmental science,

          The right has no issue with climatology or environmental science.

          The intelligent take issue with politically motivated climatologists and environmental scientists whose preset conclusion seems to be ‘climate issues can only be solved with a socialism that utterly removes the US as a world power’.

          There is a huge difference here.

          1. MAGA for socialists – –
            Make America Go Away

          2. Pretty much!

            I agree the earth is heating up, or seems to be anyway. Almost nobody denies that. HOW MUCH is it heating up, and HOW MUCH is caused by humans… Those have not even been remotely proven by traditional scientific standards.

            Yet the progs push that it’s the end of the world and communism and impoverishment of the 1st world is the only answer. I don’t buy it.

            This described 99% of libertarian or conservative “climate deniers” I have ever come across. Nobody is against the general idea, just that they want ACTUAL proof first, and sane responses to the issue, if it is even an issue that needs to be dealt with at all.

  21. I’m outraged that those registering complaints are assuming the gender of those depicted in the ads!

  22. The UK has not banned anything. There’s no “law” involved here. The ASA is a voluntary industry body.

    1. That is false. The ASA is contracted to be a “co-regulator” with the UK government Office of Communications (OFCOM). ASA can and does refer uncooperative violators to OFCOM for legal action. The standards they enforce DO have the force of law.

      1. What I said is completely accurate. The ASA is a voluntary body.
        OfCom can indeed ban things. That hasn’t happened in this case.
        An industry body ruled against these ads.

        1. There is nothing voluntary about the ASA recommending a violation for legal action by OFCOM. The ASA is not merely a “voluntary body”. They are empowered as a “co-regulator” by OFCOM. What you said is not accurate.

    2. What the frick are you talking about? They got ads banned because of a law.

      Voluntary my ass.

  23. The ASA: Because you’re too stupid to think for yourselves.

  24. Google coughed up some more commercials they might want to take a look at.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HE9nLWFZ6ac

    Yeah. I laughed.

    1. Waaaassssup!

      Classic. That’s all we did when that commercial came on.

      Still do.

  25. BBC news showed the commercials. Let’s hope this form of censorship is never enacted here.

    1. USA may be harder. Canada I can see. Especially when run by ideological turds – with King Poptart Lasagne at the top – like the ones in power right now.

  26. Pretty tough when a 30 second ad has to show all possibilities of everything, and can’t focus in on what’s typical.

    1. How dare you suggest any of us are in any way different! Except gender sometimes, but only sometimes. And skin color. And weight. And other stuff we’ll tell you about after you cross the line.

  27. You just can’t make this shit up, can you?

  28. “The Volkswagen ad showed men being astronauts, setting up a campsite, and doing a long jump, while women in the ad were shown reading on a bench reading next to a baby stroller and sleeping in a tent.”

    Really? Just exactly how do the busybodies KNOW that the actors were/are men and/or women? Are they relying on outmoded gender-ist perceptions based on external appearances? Are they not in fact being the very bigots they claim to be eradicating?

  29. OT just a bit:
    Anyone figured out yet how to make anyclip go away?

  30. Jesus. Fucken. Christ.

  31. “we considered that the ad directly contrasted stereotypical male and female roles and characteristics in a manner that gave the impression that they were exclusively associated with one gender.”

    “The types of harms we might be talking about are, for example, affecting people’s aspirations. You know it might affect the career choices girls make or boys make”

    It’s their language and even they don’t know the difference between causation and correlation. I do like the ‘You know’ subliminal thrown in there as to say this can’t be challenged. As if it is some scientific law beyond dispute.

  32. More insane denial of reality. Almost all stereotypes exist for a reason.

    Name me ONE civilization in all of history where women were all the soldiers. ONE. There isn’t one. A few societies allowed token dress up but don’t really fight chicks to kick it near battlefields, and that’s about it. Why? Because women are physically incapable of doing the job, AND mentally incapable as well. There is maybe 1 in 1000 women who are as good as the 50% mark guy on the street. Look up the all female Israeli unit where literally ALL of them either broke and ran or curled up into a ball and started crying when they got into a real combat situation.

    The same shit applies to all this other stuff. Some chicks are adrenaline junkies who like high risk stuff… But 99% are not. That’s a mans world right there. Ditto for all these other stereotypes.

    Our biology dictates all this shit at the end of the day, and no matter how much you fight it, it will never change until our biology is changed. So maybe progs will genetically engineer women with too much testosterone and different brain wiring in 100 years, but until that shit happens this is nonsense.

    Progs really just cannot accept ANYTHING about reality. They are literally insane.

    1. But you’re the one frothing at the mouth over something completely unimportant.

      1. When a huge portion of the population is pushing the belief that believing in objective reality is EVIL and must be stamped out at any cost… That is not “unimportant.”

        That is “Burn the witch!” kind of shit Tony. People need to accept reality for what it is, even though it includes a lot of nasty bits most people don’t wish were true. You can’t just pretend things work one way when they don’t work that way… And make legislation that assumes they work the way they don’t actually work.

        All the affirmative action crap for women is a bunch of bullshit that is doing actual harm to the world and its proper functioning. Being forced to promote incompetent people to higher positions of power in order to have the right gender mix will actually fuck up the world.

        So fuck off Tony.

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  35. People are not to use their critical thinking abilities, enjoy humor, or have any ability to see themselves in anyone but people exactly like them. I mean if people start Thinking, Laughing, or Considering other ways to Live the Government could not set the people against each other…

  36. The British are a very stupid people. They hide it with their accents, but their higher education system is a joke.

    But I bet you guys don’t give the first shit about how many of them want to immigrate to America, no matter how stunted their brains are.

    1. Actually, I think even European immigration should be metered out because of how many of them are retarded big government lovers. When your society is the most freedom oriented on earth, you can’t have too many statists from anywhere moving in too fast or it gets fucked… LBJ was the last Democratic president who would have won without all the post 1965 immigrant votes according to some figures I saw before.

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