By Marcus Honesta
“’Disgraceful” CUB ad banned for discrimination against poor bluey” the headline screamed.
I’m not kidding. The dolts at the Advertising Standards Board have struck again in what can only be described as political correctness gone mad.
The ad for Carlton & United Breweries’ (CUB) ‘Rusty Yak’ has been banned by the advertising scrutineer for discriminating against people with red hair.
The offending ‘Unexpected Ginger’ campaign was launched by Carlton United Breweries to support the new addition to the Yak family. Alas, they were blind-sided by the do-gooders from the Advertising Standards Board.
A complaint made by an anonymous party to the Advertising Standards Board stated that the ad was “”offensive” and “racist” and “encouraging bullying of a minority group”.”
“The campaign makes fun of people with ginger hair and portrays them in an inferior manner,” the complainant claimed.
“It’s very offensive for the advertisement to be discriminating against those with red hair, suggesting that they need to ‘stop the gene spreading’ as if it were some sort of disease. Children already get bullied at school for having red hair, and advertisements like this only further encourage that type of bullying.”
The ad concept was that the red-haired gene can come as a shock, so the brewer would be hiding a limited number of its gingery ale bottles in six-packs from across the Yak range. The bottles would appear at random like the ginger gene itself.
The voiceover announces that the ginger bottles are ‘hiding’ in regular Yak Ale six packs and invites consumers to seek one out and claim a cash prize.
Brian Phan (Brand Director at Carlton & United Breweries) said: “Ginger is the third largest and consistently growing style in the craft beer category, and we are proud of our new red-headed creation.”
Stephen de Wolf (Clemenger BBDO ECD) said: “It’s not every day we get to announce a new addition to the Yak family… especially a ginger one. We wanted sampling to be at the heart of the idea, bringing it to life in a lighthearted way that only Rusty Yak can.”
While CUB assured that the ad was intended to be “humorous” and “light-hearted”, the Advertising Standards Board ruled that the ad did in fact “vilify” and “ridicule” people with red hair.
The bio of Fiona Jolly, CEO of the Advertising Standards Board, reads: “following an extensive and diverse career with a number of Commonwealth Government departments.
She holds a Master of Laws (specialising in communications and international trade law) from the University of Melbourne and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
During her career Fiona has combined her extensive experience in regulatory reform with the determination to balance the rights of industry and consumers in the context of minimal or no government intervention”.
I only wish that she practiced what she preaches.
There is a cast of thousands who infest this ridiculous government body. As I see it, the only major qualification to be a member is to be an obsessively politically correct, meddling, busybody. Being a left-wing gender-neutral academic is optional, but encouraged.
It also helps to hold some holier-then-thou view that you know what is best for us all.
Well I am here to tell them to mind their own business, for they are as much part of the problem as what they are trying to stamp out.
Other deluded decisions included an ad for a dating site for married people, which featured men singing “I’m looking for someone other than my wife”. The Board upheld complaints about this ad for being discriminatory towards wives. Perhaps it should have found that it was just a dreadful idea in poor taste, badly cast and hideously made.
The Board, however, in an astonishing hypocritical lefty backflip, dismissed complaints about a similar ad, which featured a woman singing “I’m looking for someone other than my man”. It found that the term ‘man’ was too broad to be discriminatory against a particular group of people.
Further to this, the Board upheld complaints against an ad, which featured a woman with a picture of a prawn behind her ear and the tag line ‘hearing aids are ugly’ for vilifying a section of the community on account of their disability.
They would be wise to consider the proverb “the road to Hell is paved with good intentions”