I agree with the decision on the VW ad, that looks very much out of kilter with what we’re all trying to achieve but the Philadelphia ad? That would equally have worked with two women. And if they’d done it with two women would someone have complained about women being portrayed as the primary child carer?
Apparently the ASA got 128 complaints from the great British public on the Philadelphia ad, and 3 on the VW ad.
Well at least the ASA are doing some sort of a job now - I complained about a car advert where a bunch of male puppets leer at a female cyclist and invite her in their car and she gets in with them (potentially rapey and ecologically unsound!) and a Barclaycard one where a man on a magic big dipper that passes by people's houses looks in on a naked woman in the shower and she smiles happily at him, like this was just like saying hello. ASA said they'd had complaints about both but didn't uphold any of them.
Is it my imagination or does pretty much every single TV ad for house cleaning products feature women doing the cleaning?
As for the ones where the man is the clueless dimwit, I suppose it is gender stereotyping but I've never felt offended by them. My main reaction is usually irritation at the ad-writers' lack of imagination. It's the same feeling I get seeing yet another ad involving passage-of-time devices (oh look they're aging and having kids of their own!), scenes sliding into one another or giant corporations trying to appear homely and cuddly by throwing in some ukulele and winsome whistling.
Some adverts might be considered offensive but people do sometimes lack a bit of humour. A man struggling to cope with the kids as opposed to the super organized mum or a woman not knowing where the power switch is etc. Is a bit of harmless fun IMO.
Would the old Castlemain XXXX adverts now be considered anti Australian Male as they are seen as chauvinistic guys who like to drink lager.
Would an advert showing a group of guys down the pub watching football or a group of girls sat in a lounge watching a film drinking wine. The opera being frequented by upper class types etc?
The big problem I think is that now ads are made mostly for global rather than local markets. It means we get blandness rather than the clever British quirkiness that could be used in place of broad stereotypes.
The stereotype thing did annoy me, but I feel the legislation against it was just crazy and yet more government control. Starts with adverts, will it extend back to the censorship of plays again?
I gave up complaining to the ASA years ago for the same reason. These days, if an ad annoys me, I just don't buy the product. Sorry BMW, British Airways First Class, De Beers Diamonds etc.
Yes I completely agree that it should be up to the consumer to decide for themselves whether to support a company based on their values. If an advert doesn't sit well with you then just don't buy that product but I don't see a need to outright ban the ad. I suppose the only argument I can sort of understand is that these stereotypes pushed by these adverts may influence a younger person's understanding of gender roles etc. but it shouldn't really have any affect on the average person who the ads are actually targeted at and most kids won't be seeing ads that aren't for toys etc. so it won't affect them much anyway (although children's toy ads are usually very gendered which I'd say is a bigger problem than these but again I don't think they warrant censorship, especially when the complaints come from a relatively small amount of people).