An advert for one of Australia’s biggest online bookmakers Sportsbet has drawn 793 complaints, a new record in the country, for making a link between betting and sexual success.
The Ad Standards said that the Paddy Power Betfair owned online bookmaker had sent a “false message to young males that gambling will improve their sexual appeal”.
As reported in the Sydney Morning Herald, the Sportsbet advert in question shows a man, naked from the waist up, appearing to “manscape” his genital region.
Ad Standards Chief Executive Fiona Jolly said the large number of complaints showed consumers knew there were standards that advertisers had to adhere to.
She added: “This year we’ve had two ads that have broken the record for the biggest number of complaints and, of interest, is [that] all of the top 10 were on free-to-air television.”
Jolly also urged advertisers to familiarise themselves with provisions in the code of ethics, after the Ad Standards received a total of 6600 complaints for adverts in 2018 – another record for Australia’s independent advertising complaints adjudicator.
“The things that traditionally receive the most complaints under the code of ethics are issues around the depiction of women and sexualised images,” she continued.
“Advertisers need to really think about who they’re going to be showing the ad to – so not who they’re targeting, but who the ad is actually going to be seen by.”