Barnardo’s campaign tops 2003 ASA table with 437 complaints

The Barnardo’s campaign featuring babies with cockroaches and syringes in their mouths is this year’s most complained-about ad, according to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). The campaign has attracted 437 complaints so far.

The advertising watchdog is to meet this week to discuss the complaints and will deliver its decision next week. The campaign, designed to highlight child poverty, was created by advertising agency Bartle Bogle Hegarty.

Last year’s most complained-about advertising campaign also came from the charities sector: British Heart Foundation’s ads featuring a woman with a plastic bag over her head triggered 315 complaints. The ASA has upheld a complaint against a campaign created by Walsh Trott Chick Smith for Daihatsu’s Terios 4×4. The strapline “One day all cars will be this green” has been found to be misleading, because 4x4s are less environmentally friendly than other cars.

A complaint against an Association of Local Government campaign to encourage vehicle emissions testing, which featured on petrol pumps and buses with the claim that “24,000 people in the UK die every year due to breathing in polluted air” was partly upheld because it exaggerated the claims of a Government report.

A Ryanair press advertisement has been censured for giving the misleading impression that St Etienne airport serves Lyon. Ryanair has been ordered to remove the word “Lyon” from its ad.

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