Complaint: 15/043

Wicked Campers Vehicle

Details

Complainants
J. Hamilton
advertisers
Wicked Campers
Year
2015
Media
Out of Home
Product
Vehicles / Transportation
Clauses
Decision
Upheld / Settled
ASA Links
Website Listing
Decision Document

Document

COMPLAINT NUMBER
15/043
COMPLAINANT
J. Hamilton
ADVERTISER
Wicked Campers
ADVERTISEMENT
Wicked Campers Vehicle
DATE OF MEETING
24 February 2015
OUTCOME
Upheld



SUMMARY

The Wicked Camper rental vehicle included a quote on the rear door. The quote read:

"Your thighs won't touch if my head's between them. wickedcampers.com."

The Complainant said the quote on the rear of the rental vehicle was offensive and inappropriate and could be seen by children.

The Complaints Board was disappointed that this particular Advertiser had a policy of not responding to complaints (14/097, 14/092; 14/404; 14/544). It also expressed its concern at the Advertiser's refusal to engage with, and respect, the principles of self-regulation.

The Complaints Board said the quote on the rear of the vehicle was deliberately provocative and was likely to cause serious and widespread offence and the Complaints Board ruled to Uphold the complaint.

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Please note this headnote does not form part of the Decision.



COMPLAINTS BOARD DECISION

The Chairman directed the Complaints Board to consider the advertisement with reference to Basic Principle 4 and Rule 5 of the Code of Ethics. This required the Complaints Board to consider whether the advertisement, taking into account generally prevailing community standards, contained anything that was likely to cause serious or widespread offence to most people. The Complaints Board was also required to consider whether the advertisement had been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and to society.

The Complaints Board noted the concerns of the Complainant that the quote on the rear of the rental vehicle was offensive and inappropriate and could be seen by children.

As a preliminary matter, the Complaints Board noted numerous attempts by the Secretariat to contact the Advertiser for a response to the complaint; however, no response had been received by the deadline given. The Complaints Board was disappointed that this particular Advertiser continuously not responded to complaints (14/097, 14/092; 14/404; 14/544; 15/020; 15;042). It also expressed its concern at the Advertiser's repeated refusal to engage with, and respect, the principles of self-regulation.

The Complaints Board then turned to a photograph of the vehicle which included the Wicked Camper's website and a quote which said "Your thighs won't touch if my heads between them. wickedcampers.com."

The Complaints Board was of the view the advertisement, which did not contain any swear words and was on the rear door of the van, had high visibility and mobility. The Complaints Board took into account the quote on the van and the wide range of people that could potentially view the advertisement (including those under 18 years of age). The Complaints Board said the quote on the rear door, was deliberately provocative and offensive and due to its medium, was widely accessible by a varied audience.

The Complaints Board said while the quote may appeal to the Advertiser's target market, it clearly offended against generally prevailing community standards and was likely to cause serious and widespread offence to most people. The Complaints Board also said the advertisement had not been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and to society and ruled the advertisement was in breach of Basic Principle 4 and Rule 5 of the Code of Ethics.

Accordingly, the Complaints Board ruled to Uphold the complaint.



DESCRIPTION OF ADVERTISEMENT

The Wicked Camper rental vehicle included a quote on the rear door. The quote read:

"Your thighs won't touch if my heads between them. wickedcampers.com."

COMPLAINT FROM J. HAMILTON

On Sunday 25th Jan we were in Wanaka Central Otago and we saw a Wicked van pull in and park. It had writing on the back of it which of course we read What we read '

Your thighs wont touch if my heads between them'

How this can be allowed on the back of a van driving around our NZ countryside I cannot understand it. I have Grandchildren and to possibly have to explain the meaning of this to them is something I shouldn't have to do. I find this disgusting and vulgar and object strongly that a company thinks they have the right to display slogans such as this in broad daylights in any town at any time. I have seen many of these slogans before but I find this one particularly offensive. We do not need this type of thing being displayed around our beautiful country and right in the face of our children.



CODE OF ETHICS

Basic Principle 4: All advertisements should be prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and to society.

Rule 5: Offensiveness - Advertisements should not contain anything which in the light of generally prevailing community standards is likely to cause serious or widespread offence taking into account the context, medium, audience and product (including services).


RESPONSE FROM ADVERTISER, WICKED CAMPERS

No response submitted.