A trailer for the US comedy movie, ‘I Love You Man’ has been banned by the UK advertising watchdog for containing references to oral sex.
The online trailer saw different characters from the hit film discussing the act. In one scene a female character said, "He goes down on you like six times a week," to which another female character replied, "Lock that tongue down girl."
In another scene, a male character said, "Sometimes I wish that she enjoyed ...", to which another male character replied "getting it in the tush?"; the first male character responded, "No. Oral sex."
In a further scene a male character said, "Zoe you are about to marry a pleasure giver ... so give it back, return the favour", to which a male character whispered to his female partner "I don't think she sucks his ..." and she replied, "Watch your mouth."
The ad only ran for one day but a complainant to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) maintained that his child had viewed the ad. He objected that the sexual content of the ad was offensive and unsuitable to be displayed on the Yahoo! homepage where children could see it.
Paramount Pictures UK said that Yahoo! had assured them that 90% of the visitors to the page it appeared on were over 18 years of age. They added that to be viewed users had to click on an ad where they believed users would see the 15 rating, even though the trailer the trailer was rated as a 12A.
Yahoo! UK Ltd added that they did not consider the trailer “gratuitous, offensive or shocking” and had place it “appropriately” on its ‘Metro’ homepage, where statistics showed that over 90% of users were over the age of 18.
It also said that they received no complaints directly even though the ad had been viewed a large number of times.
However, the ASA considered that the display element of the ad gave no indication of the sexual themes of the trailer and was not protected by age verification. It added some users would find the references to oral sex offensive.
Although Yahoo! claimed the homepage users were mostly over 18, the ASA ruled that the site was of general interest and likely to appeal to a broad range of internet users, there fore the ad had not be appropriately targeted.
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