ASA Rejects Complaints About Marriage Campaign

Media Release 19 May 2013
The advertising watchdog has poured cold water on a campaign of complaints against two of Family First’s information sheets during the recent marriage debate.

Complainant A Charman said that the “21 great reasons to keep marriage as is” was ‘extraordinarily offensive’, ‘inflammatory, largely incorrect and was filled with biases’. But the Advertising Standards Authority threw out the complaint saying that advertisements allowed for points of view and robust expression. There was therefore no apparent breach of Advertising Codes and therefore no grounds for the complaint to proceed.

And a complaint by activist Calum Bennachie along with an orchestrated campaign of identical complaints against the “My Marriage Pledge” newspaper adverts was also rejected as having no apparent breach of the Codes of Advertising.

“Once again, we see evidence of people who are demanding tolerance and diversity showing very little of it. Fortunately the ASA understands the need for robust and open debate,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.

“The ASA was completely correct to send the complaints to the paper shredder.”

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