AA ad banned in UK.

Via elephant journal
on Sep 6, 2009
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What’s  wrong with this ad? Okay, it’s sexual, clearly, and the model looks a bit on the young side…but is it right, in a democracy, to ban things just because we don’t like them?

The ad appeared in VICE magazine, where it paled in comparison to the editorial content. 😉

uk ad aa banned

To read the background story (strange it was banned in Europe, which is usually more relaxed that America is when it comes to sex, just look at their magazines) and see the ad full-size, click the ad above and go to Adland.


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11 Responses to “AA ad banned in UK.”

  1. The irony is that the ad is now being distributed around the world … for free. "Strike me down and I will become more powerful than you could possibly imagine." – Obi-Wan

  2. Spot on. Probably what the AA design department was thinking.

  3. Lots more comments on Facebook, wish folks would bother to post over here more often so that our readers can see their two cents, and comment back.

  4. Adrian: silly brits, that's a nice ad.
    6 hours ago · Delete

    Caroline Root I can see why someone would ban that ad, I just can't see why it's the uk because their papers have similar but more so photos all the time.
    6 hours ago · Delete

    Stephanie Bernstein I despise AA's marketing of kiddie porn. Hurrah for some boundaries.
    5 hours ago · Delete

    Adrian: "kiddie Porn" really? Please. That is a healthy 21 year old with an average normal body, they market with non-fake average women, no make-up, no boob jobs, she aint 40 but she aint no kiddie.
    4 hours ago · Delete

    Stephanie Bernstein: I agree — these pics are actually more tasteful than most. But google them, peruse their website, you will see a lot of photos that have a different sense . . .
    3 hours ago · Delete

    Adrian: okay fair enough, cheer squad, maybe a bit young.

  5. In response to the question 'is it right in a democracy to ban things just because we don't like them?':

    The answer is a resounding YES! Of course! This is the entire basis of a democracy where government is supposed to represent the will of the people.

    It's not about whether or not you or I like it – it's about whether or not the population of the UK likes it.

    It's ironic, however, given the UK's history of Page Three Models http://ow.ly/ohPP

  6. ndsmith says:

    Cameron, I've got to completely disagree. The only democracy that I would accept is a "liberal democracy", i.e., one that guarantees the protection of individual liberties. Any other form of democracy would give way to mob rule, governed by demagoguery. In such a state, I would feel very threatened by the "majority" who could "choose" to, say, shut me up, throw me out, or even kill me. Not a pretty picture if you ask me!

    A plurality of Texans (over40%) think Barack Obama is not a citizen of the US! I thank my lucky stars every day that I have civil rights and am not subject to the whims of the majority.

  7. Interesting perspective (what is your name btw – will make this so much easier).

    I don't think we completely disagree at all – I just presume that a liberal democracy is what we are talking about – will be more precise with my language in future.

    Of course, defining what constitutes 'individual liberties' is also important. Freedom of speech and the right to bear arms are obvious mainstays of US 'liberties' as they are generally defined, yet there is little argument amongst those who use their cerebral cortex for more than crushing beer cans that neither of these individual liberties should over-ride what is 'best for all' (as they so often do). In that sense, perhaps individual liberties require more rational debate.

    In regards to this ad, however, my primary points still stand. It's the UK – if they have a problem with it, let them take it up with their censorship board. If they don't like how their censorship board operates, they can agitate to change it. Thats the beauty of democracy. And if we don't like the attitudes of those around us, we can always move somewhere more congenial.

  8. helen says:

    Elephant, you seem very fond of posting this kind of thing, youre sailing quite close to the wind, a little fascinated it seems…

  9. You clicked, didn't you? We post dozens if not hundreds of articles on subjects we care about (Everglades come to mind, health care, bikes, recycling hazardous waste etc etc etc) that get very few clicks. American Apparel, along with veganism, is a traffic-go-to for elephant—which needs traffic to stay alive when readers read free.

    That said, they're appropriate for our editorial focus, mission-wise, because we regard elephant and our readership as overwhelmingly female, and AA walks the line of depicting women in good and bad ways. So it's an important issue for us and our readers, like yourself, to explore and comment upon. On the postive side, they're far greener and Made in USA and fair-labor supportive than most companies that you and I probably love. I've written on these paradoxes before, just search "American Apparel" "made in USA" "Everglades" etc.

  10. […] L: founder Dov Charney in a detail of a typically controversial early years post-coital ad featuring…himself and a “friend.” R: AA has consistently taken risks, both good and occasionally iffy. […]

  11. LaLaLauren says: