Most complained about Aussie ads of 2015



Perm Creative Packaging-Designer Recruitment, Corporate Art-Direction Roles Australia, Permanent Junior-to-Mid Advertising-Agency Account-Director Recruitment Melbourne


Each year, Ad Standards releases a list of the most complained about advertisements in Australia.

 

According to the AdStandards Blog, the three main issues that arose in the most complained about ads in 2015 were: language, discrimination and sex, and sexuality and nudity.

 

 Without further ado, here are the 10 advertisements that Australians found most offensive:

 

10. Edgewell

The scene: Three women trimming bonsai plants in front of their crotches.
Complaints: 
53
Why: 
Sexual content/nudity
Sample: "It is rude. It gives girls the impression they need to do shave there [sic] selves in their private parts."  
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed. 

9. SCA Hygiene Australasia

The scene: People spill things and say, "Oh, sheet."
Complaints: 
56
Why: 
Inappropriate language
Sample: "The ad makes the word 'sheet' deliberately sound like a swear word. My children assume they are swearing in the ad." 
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.

 

8Hyundai Motor Company Australia Pty Ltd

The scene: A woman flicks her belt at a snake
Complaints: 
59
Why: 

Sample: "If she did the same thing to a puppy would that be okay?? Just because it's a snake...."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.

7Unilever Australia

The scene:  A man kisses a woman, and then a man.

 Complaints: 62
Why: Sexuality
Sample: "I am offended by the part where he kisses another man. I find it awkward and offensive to have to see that."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.

6Stan

The scene:  Rebel Wilson calls her cat a "big pussy."
Complaints: 66
Why: Sexuality
Sample: "Reference to female genitalia and the smelling of same. Inappropriate innuendo."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed. 
 

The ad in question was not available, but Sportsbet's YouTube channel has plenty of other content that some would deem inappropriate. 

The scene:  A sweaty man wipes himself down at the gym.
Complaints: 71
Why: Other social values
Sample: "Person wiping his testicles with a towel and then wiping sweat off his underarms and then to go on to sniff - it is totally disgusting and offensive."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.
 
The scene:  A woman on her period transforms into a fatter, angrier and more hysterical version of herself. 
Complaints: 76
Why: Misogyny
Sample: "The woman that has her period says she feels like she's sitting on a jam donut. It is disgusting and I feel embarrassed as a woman seeing that foul ad!"
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.


3.  Fantastic Snacks Australia

The scene:  A woman licks chip flavoring off a man's lips. 
Complaints: 85
Why: Sexuality
Sample: "This commercial has a perverted nature, it’s basically soft porn. l find it extremely offensive that l watch a female licking the male’s face around his mouth in a sexual manner."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.


2.  Ashley Madison

The scene:  Men sing about "looking for someone other than my wife."
Complaints: 138
Why: Misogyny
Sample: "I don't have a problem with the prostitution side of the ad, just the fact that the word 'wife' is used and being depicted as sexually useless."

Verdict: Complaints upheld; commercial taken off the air.

1Holden Ltd

The scene:  A man drives his young son down the road and says "bloody caravaners." His son then parrots him.
Complaints: 161
Why: Inappropriate language
Sample: "This ad is wrong on many levels including berating drivers who are being cautious, promoting a form of road rage that could cause drivers to overtake slower vehicles too soon while encouraging children to be intolerant."
Verdict: Complaints were dismissed.