Vodafone NZ Television
COMPLAINT NUMBER 16/051
COMPLAINANT J. Scott
ADVERTISER Vodafone NZ ADVERTISEMENT Vodafone NZ Television DATE OF MEETING 17 February 2016
OUTCOME No Grounds to Proceed
Complaint: The television advertisement for Vodafone showed a courier driver travelling with a pig. The voice-over says "Life's better together" and promotes a network guarantee. Scenes in the advertisement showed the courier driver feeding the pig after stopping at a dairy and the pig snuffling in a bowl of popcorn while the courier driver slept in front of the television.
Complainant, J. Scott, said: "The Courier driver supposedly saved this wee pig from the meat trade, then the advert show him feeding it popcorn and grain waves. That is NOT okay. It's disgusting. He might as well kill it quickly, instead of slowly. I believe this shows children that it is okay to give animals junk food. It isn't. At first, this ad just confused me. Now, every time I see it I get angry. I wonder if something could be done about this please? "
The relevant provision was Basic Principle 4 of the Code of Ethics.
The Chairman noted the concerns of the Complainant about the scenes in the advertisement where the pig was being feed snacks and this showed children it is okay to feed animals' junk food. In the Chairman's view, this was an extreme interpretation of the advertisement which referred to the idea of 'Life's better together' and continuing the story of the driver and the piglet he rescued.
While the scenes in the advertisement that showed the pig eating food intended for human consumption were not ideal, the Chairman did not consider they would encourage children to feed such food to their animals. The Chairman said the advertisement had been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility and there was no apparent breach of the Code of Ethics.
Accordingly, the Chairman ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Chairman' s Rul i ng: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed.