Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

'Homophobic' Car Leasing Ad Is Pulled; It's Not Offensive, Insists Its Creator to Watchdog

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

'Homophobic' Car Leasing Ad Is Pulled; It's Not Offensive, Insists Its Creator to Watchdog

Article excerpt

Byline: KATIE DICKINSON Reporter katie.dickinson@reachplc.com @KATIEJDICKINSON

AN advert for a Gateshead car leasing company that mocked "BMW bum boys" has been banned over its use of "homophobic language".

The Facebook ad for the lease of a Fiat Spider by Ling's Cars, headquartered at Vance Business Park, was reported to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) after appearing in the complainant's news feed in February.

It read: "Who needs a V8 Kia Stinker or a BMW bum boy car, when you have the best small convertible ever?" The ASA has now ruled the advert must not appear again after finding the term "would be regarded as homophobic by many people".

But Ling's Cars owner Ling Valentine has hit back on social media, saying a BMW bum boy was "a common meme on the internet and has absolutely no offensive connotations".

When approached by the ASA, she offered to change the wording to "BMW batty boy", but was told it was "equally offensive for the same reason".

According to a ruling published this week, Ling's Cars "did not believe the term 'BMW bum boy' was offensive and thought it was a well-known term for someone who owned a modified BMW vehicle and drove aggressively".

The firm also said the advert was targeted at people above the age of 24 and to those who had an interest in cars.

But a complaint against it was upheld, with the decision saying: "The ASA considered that 'bum boy' was widely understood as a derogatory term directed at homosexual men and that the use of that term to describe a vehicle would therefore be regarded as homophobic by many people.

"While we acknowledged Ling's Cars comments on its target audience, we considered that a person's age and their interest in cars had no relevance as to whether or not they would be offended by homophobic language.

"We therefore concluded that the ad was likely to cause serious offence to some readers. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.