Vodafone Television Advertisement
18 July 2007
Complainant: B. Tait
Advertisement: Vodafone New Zealand Limited
Complaint: The television advertisement with the tagline "Make the Most of Now" included the following voice-over, with accompanying images.
"Isn't the world a great place. I mean, just think of all the things you can do now. You can change the colour of your hair, your skin and even your eyes. ...Men can stay home and look after the kids while women go to work and bring home the bacon. If you don't have boobs you can just go and buy a pair. You can dial a hubby. You can get donuts in 564 different flavours..."
Complainant, B. Tait, expressed the view that the advertisement was degrading to females and made trivial remarks about breast augmentation making light of the pain and risk involved with surgery, and suggesting women need to change their appearance to be accepted by society.
The relevant provision was the Code of Ethics, Basic Principle 4 and Rule 5.
The Chairman noted B. Tait's concern about the advertisement. However, he observed that it contained a series of light hearted examples about changes in society, which among other things commented on a woman's ability to change her physical appearance. As such, he was of the view that it did not have the implications suggested by the Complainant and did not reach the threshold to be in breach of the Advertising Codes.
The Chairman ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Chairman's Ruling: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed