UK Burger Company Slammed For Mother’s Day Ad Featuring Madeleine McCann

UK Burger Company Slammed For Mother’s Day Ad Featuring Madeleine McCann

A UK-based burger restaurant has been slammed for publishing online ads during Britain’s Mother’s Day featuring confronting images of missing child, Madeleine McCann.

The Otley Burger Company copped it for its digital ad which showed images of Madeleine and her mother Kate McCann, with the accompanying caption: “Burgers for dinner? With burgers this good, you’ll leave your kids at home. What’s the worst that could happen?”

In an unfortunate week for poorly timed burger ads, Otley Burger Company’s latest foray in the online ad space was, unsurprisingly, met with derision and disgust.

Was it due to the above caption? Or possibly the smaller image of Maddie being abducted by a masked man, with a further caption reading, “Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there”? Your guess is as good as ours.

According to The Daily Mail, the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) received an astonishing three complaints that the ad was likely to cause offence or distress.

The ASA then passed on the complaints to Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, and called for the ads to be immediately taken down, as well as for Otley Burger Company’s accounts to be suspended.

“I’m not taking the mick out of a missing toddler. I’m basically putting, ‘Happy Mother’s Day’ to all the mums,” Otley Burger Company boss, Joe Scholey, told Leeds Live last month.

“She [Kate McCann] is a mum. Not the world’s greatest mum and not the world’s worst.”

The company announced the ads have since been taken down.

“The disappearance of Madeleine McCann had been a high-profile and long-running media story which remained widely known. We considered the images of them would be instantly recognisable to many people,” ASA announced in a statement.

“We further considered that any reference to a missing child was likely to be distressing, and that in the context of an ad promoting a burger company the distress caused was unjustified.”

It should be noted this isn’t Scholey, nor his company’s first rodeo.

The Daily Mail reports the burger shop has previously used images of “Yorkshire Ripper” Peter Sutcliffe, notorious pedophile Jimmy Saville, and serial killer Fred West in its Father’s Day ads.

The ASA also announced it had told the burger company to ensure “they avoided causing serious and widespread offence and distress” again.

In true sigma male fashion, Scholey and the Otley Burger Company – whose company motto is “Our Grill Is Ribbed For Your Pleasure” – provided their own analysis of the controversy.

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