Diageo: ‘Ofcom alcohol proposals are flawed’

Drinks giant Diageo has expressed concerns about restrictions on its freedom to advertise on television, in response to Ofcom’s consultation on alcohol advertising. This is the first time the owner of Smirnoff Ice and Archers Aqua has challenged some of the Ofcom proposals, such as those asking advertisers not to associate drinking with bravado.

Diageo argues that this could potentially rule some out of its Guinness campaigns, which feature strong male protagonists responding positively to a challenge.

Diageo has also urged Ofcom to change the proposed amendment of the clause concerning the issue of youth appeal, as the new provision is highly “flawed”. It has asked the regulator to define the terms “adolescent” and “juvenile” clearly, because they could be open to different interpretations.

Past Diageo advertising campaigns that have pushed the limits when it comes to sex include an ad for Smirnoff Ice, which suggested that a couple were having sex in a box at the opera.

Last week, the Incorporated Society of British Advertisers (ISBA) accused the regulator of being “over-prescriptive and heavy-handed” in its proposal to amend the alcohol advertising code (MW last week).

According to ISBA, the draft proposal could take nearly all current alcohol advertising campaigns off air. It adds that the potential for effective advertising in the sector will be so limited that investment will be diverted into other media, denying TV broadcasters valuable income.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here