Feeds

Video game ad banned for 'realistic' violence

Stranglehold promo strangled

Build a business case: developing custom apps

An advert for a computer game has been banned from television. The advert for Stranglehold had realistic violence, constant gunfire and condoned violence, according to ad watchdog the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

The ASA responded to two complaints about the promotional clip for the game, which is endorsed by martial arts director John Woo. One person complained that the advert glorified gun violence and could affect susceptible people. Another said their three-year-old son had seen the ad when it was shown before the 9pm television watershed.

The advertising agency behind the ad, Picture Production Company, said it believed it was clear the footage was animation and not realistic, and that nobody was seen to be shot because bullets were fired into the air in the clip.

The ASA did not accept its arguments. "The ASA noted that the shooting was almost continuous throughout the ad and considered that the violence depicted, although computer-generated, was realistic in appearance," said its ruling.

"We considered the voice-over, which stated 'Honour is his code. Vengeance is his mission. Violence is his only option,' suggested that it was honourable to seek revenge and that violence was an acceptable solution to a situation."

Picture Production Company said it had submitted the advert to Clearcast and had received approval to show it. Clearcast is a company owned by the major broadcasters which carries out pre-broadcast clearing of adverts using the ASA's rules as guidance.

It said it thought the violence unrealistic and stylised, and that the ad could be shown because there was no interpersonal or gory violence. It said it had recommended showing the advert only after 7.30pm.

The ASA also rejected Clearcast's assessment. "We considered the ad was likely to be seen as encouraging and condoning violence. Because the issues raised by the ad could not be addressed with a timing restriction, we considered the only solution was to withdraw the ad from transmission completely," said the ruling.

The ASA ordered Stranglehold publisher Midway Games not to re-broadcast the advert because it broke the Advertising Code's rules on violence and cruelty and its rules on health and safety.

Copyright © 2008, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.