Advertising Standards Authority upholds Precious Life Billboard
The Advertising Standards Authority has upheld Precious Life's pro-life Billboard promoting the March for Their Lives
The ASA have informed Precious Life that they recently received a complaint about Precious Life's Billboard.
The ASA informed us, "In this instance, we decided to put the issue to the ASA Council for consideration. As you’ll see, Council has decided that no further investigation is necessary."
The ad under attack was an outdoor billboard close to Belfast city centre which read, "Our unborn babies need you to…MARCH FOR THEIR LIVES CUSTOM HOUSE SQUARE BELFAST SATURDAY 7th SEPTEMBER 2.00PM” and featured images of five babies.
- The complainant, who understood the ad was for a pro-life group, challenged whether the ad was misleading as they believed it implied the babies featured in the ad and who were alive were at risk of being killed.
- The complainant, who understood consumers who may have had an abortion would view the ad as it was prominently placed in Belfast, also challenged whether the ad was distressing and inappropriately placed.
- Council considered consumers would be likely to interpret the ad to be for a pro-life group and which invited those who agreed with the advertiser’s view on abortion to attend a march in Belfast. They considered consumers would be likely to interpret the babies featured in the ad to demonstrate the advertiser’s view on abortion, rather than imply the babies themselves in the ad would be killed. Council therefore concluded the ad was not misleading.
- Council considered consumers would be likely to interpret the ad to be the advertiser’s view on abortion. They acknowledged that consumers, and particularly those in Northern Ireland, could have differing views on the issue of abortion, and that some consumers may find the approach in the ad to be distasteful. They nevertheless considered the advertiser was permitted to advertise so long as the content of the ad was not, amongst others, likely to cause distress. Although Council noted that some consumers may find the term “unborn babies” to be emotive, they considered the ad did not feature any explicit imagery or text. Given this, Council considered the ad was not likely to cause undue distress, regardless of a consumer’s own personal circumstances, to those who viewed the ad. Council therefore also concluded that the ad had not been inappropriately placed.
The ASA concluded, "We’ve told the complainant that we won’t pursue the matter because, on the facts available to us, the ad rules have not been broken."
This case is a clear example of the blatant intolerance which the pro-life viewpoint and those who express it have to endure from an increasingly intolerant and unreasonable abortion lobby. Abortion supporters seem to be relentless in their quest to stifle and silence the pro-life viewpoint and will stop at nothing to limit freedom of speech and of expression. This was further evidenced by the appalling attack on our Billboards, funded through the generosity of our supporters, which were covered in blue paint and vandalised with appalling graffiti. Precious Life are pleased that the Advertising Standards Authority has acknowledged Precious Life's ad as an example of direct, honest and ethical advertising.