Advertising Standards Bureau Review of Operations 2016 2016 Review of operations_WEB - Page 33

Discrimination and vilification (Section 2.1, AANA Code of Ethics) Section 2.1 of the Code states: Advertising or Marketing Communications shall not portray people or depict material in a way which discriminates against or vilifies a person or section of the community on account of race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, age, sexual preference, religion, disability, mental illness or political belief. It is important for advertisers to note that depictions of any section of society may raise concerns of discrimination, especially if groups are presented in a stereotypical manner. Although the use of humour and a light-hearted nature in advertisements has in certain cases lessened the impact of the overall message, if the Board views the advertisement as discriminatory against any group it will breach Section 2.1. In 2016 discrimination and vilification was the most complained about issue accounting for 27.23 per cent of complaints, significantly higher than in 2015 (15.76 per cent) but similar to 2014 (27.61 per cent). For a more in-depth overview of discrimination and vilification cases in 2016 see the discrimination and vilification determination summary on the ASB website. Discrimination against age In 2016 the Board found two advertisements to breach the Code in relation to this issue. The Board was of the view that: • An online advertisement which states ‘don’t let your property be managed by a teenager’ (Bees Nees City Realty – 0547/16). Phrases which create a negative stereotype of older women are vilifying to women on the basis of age. - - A print advertisement which featured an image of an older woman wearing a nightdress and holding a shot gun and the text ‘is your property manager a grumpy old cow?’ (Hayeswinckle – 0542/16). • Advertising which shows a group of people acting in a wild and inappropriate manner, is not discriminating against young people when the focus of the advertisement is not on their age. A television advertisement which shows a group of tenants acting responsibly or irresponsibly in a house, to promote a Portraying older people as sexual beings is not discriminatory when they are portrayed in a positive and active manner. - - A television advertisement where an older woman tells her son she is leaving her money to the attractive gardener (Specsavers Pty Ltd – 0213/16). Discrimination on the ground of disability or mental illness The Board did not find any advertisements to breach the Code in relation to this issue in 2016. The Board is of the view that: • The Board also dismissed complaints against a number of cases in 2016 about this issue and is of the view that: - - Review of Operations 2016 • Advertising which suggests that someone in a professional role is not good at their job because they are young or they look young is discriminatory towards young people. - - • real estate company (First National Real Estate – 0290/16). Advertisers are free to use whomever they wish in their advertising and acknowledged that while many people would find the use of people suffering from terminal illness to be confronting, the Board considered that the Code does not preclude this use. - - • A television advertisement which features people with terminal illnesses sharing their thoughts on home ownership (Ubank – 0456/16). Reference to the word ‘suicide’ in advertising does not in itself equate to discrimination or vilification of people with mental illness. - - A billboard advertisement for the movie ‘Suicide Squad’ with images of the main characters from the movie (Roadshow Film Distributors Pty Ltd – 0351/16). 31