Reckitt Benckiser (NZ) Limited, Television
COMPLAINT NUMBER 17/189
COMPLAINANT M Barnham
ADVERTISER Reckitt Benckiser (NZ) Limited
ADVERTISEMENT Reckitt Benckiser (NZ) Limited, Television
DATE OF MEETING 19 June 2017
OUTCOME No Grounds to Proceed
Advertisement: The television advertisement for Dettol Wipes shows a mother wiping over the kitchen surfaces with a raw chicken leg, while a voiceover says "Wiping germy surfaces with a sponge can be just as bad as doing that. Dettol disinfection wipes kills 99.9% of germs instead of spreading them round. To help protect your family - Dettol that!"
The Chair ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Complainant, M Barnham, said: I wish to express my complete disgust at an advertisement for Dettol Wipes as filmed by you. Wiping a raw chicken leg over domestic surfaces is pathetic, ignorant and misleading to many citizens. New immigrants particularly. Whoever in whatever advertising agency did this work, completely missed all hygiene and educated principles. I can only assume it came cheap.
As an elderly Kiwi I am bewildered that a product with an already accepted market needs a promotion by "too clever by half" idiots.
Reverse psychology certainly didn't work for this customer.
The relevant provisions were Code of Ethics - Basic Principle 4, Rule 2, Rule 4, Rule 5. The Chair noted the Complainant's concern that wiping a chicken leg over a domestic
surface was misleading in terms of hygiene practices.
The Chair said that on viewing the advertisement, it was clear that the Advertiser had employed an exaggerated scenario in order to highlight risks about the spread of germs when using a kitchen sponge. Given the hyperbolic nature of the advertisement, she did not consider that it would cause serious or widespread offence and was not likely to mislead consumers about proper hygiene.
The Chair ruled the advertisement had been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and there was no apparent breach of the Code of Ethics.
Accordingly, the Chair ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Chai r' s Ruling: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed.