Sunday Times rapped for ‘blasphemous’ ad

A photograph of Raquel Welch in a leather bikini and apparently nailed to a cross which was used in an ad for The Sunday Times has provoked a storm of complaint.

A total of 140 people contacted the Advertising Standards Authority protesting that the ad was tasteless, provocative and blasphemous. The complaints about the ad, which appeared in sister title The Times to promote a series on the work of photographer Terry O’Neill, were upheld.

Vivendi, parent company of rail franchisee Connex, was rapped for a misleading national press ad through EURO RSCG Wnek Gosper which said the rail operator was improving without providing evidence to back the claim.

British Airways was criticised for a misleading poster at Belfast airport through M&C Saatchi, showing an aeroplane with an orange taxi light and the line: “The Shuttle. More frequent than anyone else, guv.” BA said the ad referred to the greater frequency of all of its Shuttle services rather than the flight between Belfast and London alone.

Lowe Howard-Spink withdrew a national press ad for the Vauxhall Vectra SRi which failed to distinguish sufficiently between driving on a racetrack and driving on a road, after fears it might encourage irresponsible driving.

Karrimor, the outdoor clothing brand, was rapped for two national press ads headlined “Phone in Sick”. They were considered irresponsible because they could encourage absenteeism from work.

Internet service provider Demon Internet was asked not to repeat claims that it was the number one provider by the ASA following a complaint by rival AOL Bertelsmann Online.

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