UK bans singer’s offensive album poster

The United Kingdom Advertising Standards Authority has banned a Demi Lovato album poster depicting the singer posing on a cushioned crucifix while dressed in a bondage-style outfit for offending Christians.

According to the Daily Mail, the poster, which was seen in multiple locations across London in August, had the headline ‘DEMI LOVATO’ with ‘HOLY FVCK’ — the name of the 30-year-old star’s album — written underneath it.

The poster allegedly drew four complaints alleging that it was likely to cause serious or widespread offense and was placed irresponsibly where children could see it.

The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority has now said the advert must not reappear, the report says.

Meanwhile, a division of Universal Music, Polydor Records, said it did not believe the poster would cause serious or widespread offence.

The label told the Advertising Standards Authority that it had checked that the poster was acceptable to run at the proposed sites prior to release, and had been assured that it was, Daily Mail says.

According to Polydor, the posters only appeared at six specific sites in London for a four-day period and were removed on August 23.

ASA, in its ruling, said, “The CAP Code (UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing) stated that ads must be prepared with a sense of responsibility and must not contain anything that was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.

“The ASA first assessed whether the language in the ad was likely to cause offence.

“We considered it would be clear to most readers that the ad alluded to the expression ‘holy f***’.

“Because we considered the ad was likely to be seen as referring to a swear word that many would find offensive and had appeared in an untargeted medium and public place where children were also likely to see it, we considered that the ad was likely to result in serious and widespread offence and had been targeted irresponsibly.

“We considered that the image of Ms Lovato bound up in a bondage-style outfit whilst lying on a mattress shaped like a crucifix, in a position with her legs bound to one side which was reminiscent of Christ on the cross, together with the reference to ‘holy fvck’, which in that context was likely to be viewed as linking sexuality to the sacred symbol of the crucifix and the crucifixion, was likely to cause serious offence to Christians.

“The ad must not appear again in the form complained of unless it was suitably targeted.”

 

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