Barclays ad accused of encouraging ‘parasitic’ behaviour

A Barclays ad featuring a girl demanding increasingly expensive gifts from her father as she progresses through life has been accused of portraying children as “parasitic”.

The BBH created television spot, dubbed “you versus unconditional love”, shows a demanding daughter insisting her father buys her a bike, horse, car and house.

The Advertising Standards Authority spot had received eight complaints to Friday (25 February). Complainants said the ad could encourage children to imitate the character in the ad.

A spokeswoman for Barclays says the ad is intended to be a “playful exaggeration on the reality of parenthood” and the costs involved in bringing children up. She adds the “majority of responses [to the ad] have been very positive”.

The ASA is currently assessing the complaints to decide whether to launch a formal investigation.

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