ASA raps taxi drivers over ‘Met chief’ ad

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has censured the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association poster campaign, which suggests the Metropolitan Police commissioner Sir John Stevens is turning a blind eye to the rapes and sexual assaults committed by mini-cab drivers.

The posters carried a photograph of Stevens beside the words: “233 sexual assaults and 54 rapes committed by mini-cab drivers. What’s he got to smile about?”

The Metropolitan Police Service complained about the ad and challenged the statistics on the poster. The ASA ruled that the advertiser had portrayed the commissioner unfairly by showing him without permission in an ad alongside misleading statistics. The poster received 12 complaints.

The advertising watchdog has not upheld complaints against a Maxim magazine poster campaign that showed a drunken man in a suit, lying by the kerbside next to his vomit. It carried the tagline: “Ashamed? Time to read Maxim. Grow upíöa bit.” The complainants said the ad was offensive.

The ASA ruled that Dennis Publishing-owned Maxim aimed the ad at the over-18s market by placing it in bars and bar toilets. It added that the poster was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence.

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