"Religion is a hypothesis about the world: the hypothesis that things are the way they are, at least in part, because of supernatural entities or forces acting on the natural world. And there's no good reason to treat it any differently from any other hypothesis. Which includes pointing out its flaws and inconsistencies, asking its adherents to back it up with solid evidence, making jokes about it when it's just being silly, offering arguments and evidence for our own competing hypotheses...and trying to persuade people out of it if we think it's mistaken. It's persuasion. It's the marketplace of ideas. Why should religion get a free ride"

Greta Christina

Monday, 27 September 2010

More on that ice cream advert

I wrote about this ice cream advertisement a while ago, protesting that the ASA had been wrong to ban it as offensive to Catholics.
I wrote a short email to the ASA and they have responded...

Thank you for your e-mail. I appreciate that you disagree with the ASA’s decision to uphold complaints which were made against the Antonio Federici magazine advertisement.

Complaints made on the grounds of taste and decency are often challenging given their subjective nature, a fact reflected by a number of communications we have received from individuals both opposed to and supportive of our decision. Although you disagree with our ruling I would like to reassure you that the ASA made its ruling only after very careful consideration.

The advertising rules were created and are maintained by the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP), a body representing all parts of the ad industry. The rules state that no ads should contain content that is likely to cause serious or widespread offence on the grounds of race, religion, sex or disability.

It is the ASA’s role to administer these rules and, in this case, we felt that the ad by Antonio Federici was likely to cause serious offence to some readers.

If you have not already done so, I would encourage you to read how the ASA Council reached its decision. Please access the ASA ruling in full,here.
If you read the full adjuducation as they suggest you will see that they got eight complaints from the readership of a particular magazine following which they concluded that...
the use of a nun pregnant through immaculate conception was likely to be seen as a distortion and mockery of the beliefs of Roman Catholics.
So what? why must anyone be protected from criticism or mockery of their beliefs? If they are going to go around claiming a god man was born of a virgin 2000 years ago, they should expect to be mocked in my opinion unless they can provide some evidence.
No-one has to take these ideas seriously in a free society, including advertisers and I still say the ASA was acting beyond its remit and with bad judgment.

1 comment:

  1. It doesn't take long to realize that the ad was a complete success and it was only a complete success because of those who, instead of shutting their trap, decided to scream and yell and make a mockery of themselves. I find it hilarious that the ad ended up all the way over to America!