Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2002/10/16/explicit_ads_floor_vodafone/

‘Explicit’ ads floor Vodafone

Stirring stuff

By Tim Richardson

Posted in Business, 16th October 2002 09:08 GMT

Another day, another big-name company gets a ticking-off from the guardians of advertising decency.

Step forward Vodafone, which has been told not to use "explicit and gratuitous" images to flog mobile services.

One of the ads that upset the Ad watchdog showed a couple on a stairwell. They were partly clothed with the woman pressed against the wall with one leg over the shoulder of a man who was kneeling between her legs. The caption said: "Get the flirting over with before you get home. Text".

Another ad bearing the same caption featured a partly clothed couple on the bonnet of a car with the woman straddling the man.

People had complained on the grounds that the ads were "sexually gratuitous, unsuitable to be seen by children and likely to cause serious and widespread offence".

Vodafone denied this claiming that research had found that a large number of young people used text messages to "enhance their love lives". They claimed the ads merely reflected the real mobile behaviour of younger people.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) disagreed and asked Vodafone not to repeat this approach in future. ®