‘Pay With Pain’ Ads Banned After Ad Board Found It Promoted Self-harm

‘Pay With Pain’ Ads Banned After Ad Board Found It Promoted Self-harm
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The Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has ordered the surf wear chain Ozmosis to amend its advertising after a recent ‘Pay with pain’ campaign encouraged customers to get discounts in-store if they could show cuts, bruises or scratches from surf or skateboarding accidents.

The campaign included TVC, print and billboards (including a bloodied woman holding a skateboard) and was released last month, however, following a series of complaints to the ASB the TVC has been banned and the company has been ordered to reword its print offerings.

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The main cause of the complaint was that the campaign encouraged people to hurt themselves in order to save money. Check out the now-banned TVC below.

One complainant wrote:  “This promotes harm and self-harm. One cannot be sure a person would not go so far as to hurt themselves for a discount … it’s unnerving and disgusting.”

In its defence, Ozmosis argued that scrapes and scratches were all part of action sports and the campaign didn’t show anything more graphic than would be seen on the likes of Funniest Home Videos.

In its decision, the ASB considered whether the campaign had breached section 2.6 of the Advertiser Code of Ethics, which says advertisers must create content in line with prevailing community values on health and safety.

In banning the ad, the ASB said: “The Board noted that the catch line for the campaign is ‘pay with pain’. The Board considered that most members of the community would understand this to mean that there is a direct association with hurting yourself and the deal that is being offered.”

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