Agencies Free To Tell Porkies In Gay Marriage Plebiscite Campaign Ads

Agencies Free To Tell Porkies In Gay Marriage Plebiscite Campaign Ads

Like it or not (and a lot don’t) we’re all heading to the polls next February the 11th to vote on the Government’s gay marriage plebiscite.

Yesterday, the government pledged $15 million in advertising dollars to both the ‘yes’ and the ‘no’ camps (half each) to promote their respective cause.

However, because the ads will be classed as political ads (meaning they can be liberal with the truth) they will not be bound by the same standards of accuracy and truth that most other ads are. has reported comments from a spokeswoman for the Advertising Standards Bureau (ASB) saying as the campaigns are classed as political advertising there is no requirement for content of the ads to be factually correct. Nor will the ads be monitored by the ASB like other ads are.

B&T has contacted some agencies to see if they would create ads for the ‘no’ campaign, however, most said they would decline the work. However, with a $7.5 million kitty it’s pretty certain some won’t baulk at the added work.

The much touted plebiscite (which, yes, is compulsory to vote in) is proving rather divisive. Many argue it’s a matter for our elected federal politicians to argue over. While others – namely the Labor opposition – say any ‘no’ ad campaign would stir up hatred against the gay and lesbian communities.

The actual cost of us all going to the polls again has been reported at over $175 million, with many claiming it’s a waste of money when a simple vote in the House of Representatives would suffice.

Regardless of the outcome, the plebiscite’s result is not binding and the government doesn’t have to enact the people’s wishes if it chose not to. Although that does appear unlikely.

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Advertising Standards Bureau Gay marriage plebiscite Malcolm Turnbul. Bill Shorten

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