Is the ASA run by Mary Whitehouse?
A lingerie ad has been banned for being ‘overly sexualised’.
An advert for fashion retailer Pretty Little Things has been banned by the UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) for being ‘irresponsible’ and ‘likely to cause offence’.
The ASA has upheld a complaint from a member of the public, arguing that the advert promoted its products in an ‘overly sexualised way’.
Pretty Little Thing advert featuring women in lingerie banned for being "offensive" https://t.co/QSZod0XQdx
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) February 5, 2020
According to the BBC, the ad ‘began with a woman looking over her shoulder in a seductive manner wearing black vinyl, high-waisted chaps-style knickers. It then showed other scantily clad women in seductive or “highly sexualised” poses, including one wearing a transparent mesh bodysuit’.
In 2017, an ad by the same company was banned by the ASA for portraying a model in a ‘sexually suggestive’ manner.
Pass the smelling salts! Sex has been a prominent feature of advertising since at least the 1950s – particularly when it comes to fashion. What’s more, the product itself is inherently sexual. If ‘lingerie’ were de-sexualised it would surely just be underwear.
The ASA should of course tackle advertisers who make misleading claims. But it is increasingly acting as the nation’s moral guardian. In recent years, it has started banning ads that promote ‘harmful gender stereotypes’, even though many of the ads it has censored have been totally harmless:
The ASA’s regime of ‘feminist’ censorship has a great deal in common with the puritanism of old. Mary Whitehouse would be proud.
spiked is free, and it always will be, which is why we need your help. We don’t have a paywall, or bonus content for paying customers, because we want our arguments for freedom and democracy, against misanthropy and identity politics, to reach as many people as possible. Which is why we ask those of our readers who can afford it to chip in. One-off donations are hugely appreciated, but monthly donations are even better. They allow us to plan for the future and to grow. Even £5 a month is a huge help. It’s much cheaper than your average magazine subscription, and it ensures that spiked is free and open to all. To make either a monthly or a one-off donation, click here. Thank you for your support.
To enquire about republishing spiked’s content, a right to reply or to request a correction, please contact the managing editor, Viv Regan.