One North-East boozer has done little to repair the region’s reputation as the binge drinking capital of the UK after being slapped down for an ad which claimed sleeping with someone when off your face was a badge of honour.
The issue was sparked by a posting on the Trocaderos South Shields Facebook page, promoting a competition. It featured a poster with an image of two women both drinking from large glasses and text which stated “Got yourself drunk at Trocs? Woke up in someone else’s bed? Walk of shame? F*ck that it’s the stride of pride!”
Text next to the poster stated: “It’s time for the Thursday Hijack! Like and Share this poster for a chance to win a free Thursday night out in Trocaderos!”.
But Balance, the North East Alcohol Office, and others were less than impressed, believing the ad was offensive, irresponsible and linked alcohol to sexual activity.
Having been contacted by the Advertising Standards Authority, the licensee apologised for the ad strategy which it considered could be misinterpreted. It stated it had also contacted the DrinkAware.co.uk charity with an apology, as it recognised the naivety of its advertising policies.
The ad was removed from Facebook as soon as the firm had been made aware of the public and authorities’ concerns with the ad’s content.
It said it appreciated that using popular colloquialisms and tongue-in-cheek jokes and quotes was not appropriate and had not considered the wider implications of using humour in the way it had appeared in the ad.
The ASA welcomed the advertisers’ assurance that the ad had been removed and that it took its responsibilities under the advertising code seriously.
However, it blasted the language used as gratuitous, ruling that the term “F*ck that …” was likely to cause serious offence.
It also believed the ad clearly and irresponsibly linked the excessive consumption of alcohol with sexual activity, adding that the term “walk of shame” was also sexually suggestive and linked alcohol with sexual activity.
Concluding that the ad used offensive language, encouraged excessive drinking and linked alcohol with sexual activity, the ASA banned the ad from appearing again and issued a warning about future activity.
UPDATE: The Tracaderos in South Shields is owned by brewer Camerons, but the company strenuously denies having anything to do with the ad, instead it claims that the tenant landlord of the establishment was responsible. In a statement issued to DecisionMarketing, the company said: “We have continued our discussions with the ASA regarding the ruling on their website. Can I make it clear we are not challenging the ruling itself but the statement made on their website which seems to indicate Camerons were responsible for the advert.
“The statement made on their website came directly from the tenant and not an employee or representative from Camerons. We had not spoken with the ASA about this issue before today and discussion held previously were between the ASA and the tenant in Trocaderos. Rightly the tenant has apologised for this and has removed it from his social media site.
“The tenant runs Trocaderos independently as their own venue and is not an employee of Camerons Brewery. He is responsible for the advertising and promotions he runs on his site as well as his social media content. Following this incident we will be issuing a social media and responsible advertising guide to all of our tenants within our retail pub estate.”
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