U.K. bans cream cheese ad because of 'dopey dad' stereotype

  • U.K. bans cream cheese ad because of 'dopey dad' stereotype

U.K. bans cream cheese ad because of 'dopey dad' stereotype

The move came after only a tiny number of complaints - three people protested at the Volkswagen electric vehicle advert and only one objected to Philadelphia's commercial.

The bans came in the first set of rulings introduced by the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) under new rules against harmful gendered stereotypes introduced in June.

Some 128 people complained to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) about the Mondelez advert for its Philadelphia cheese which featured two dads leaving a baby on a restaurant buffet conveyor belt as they were distracted by the food.

The UK's ad regulator banned two advertisements for following gender stereotypes on Wednesday, marking the first time the watchdog has barred ads since new rules were introduced to combat sexist stereotypes.

In response to the backlash, Mondelez UK argued that the ad showed a positive image of men with a responsible and active role in childcare in modern society. "Let's not tell Mum", he says with an embarrassed smirk after scooping up the tot", another user tweeted.

The complainants argued that the ad showed men engaged in adventurous activities in contrast with a woman in a care-giving role. Over 125 viewers complained.

"We considered, however, that the men were portrayed as somewhat hapless and inattentive, which resulted in them being unable to care for the children effectively", they added.

"We take our advertising responsibility very seriously and work with a range of partners to make sure our marketing meets and complies with United Kingdom regulation", the rep said. "We did not consider that the use of humour in the ad mitigated the effect of the harmful stereotype". "The ASA's interpretation of the ads against the new rule and guidance goes further than we anticipated and has implications for a wide range of ads".

Mondelez UK, the maker of Philadelphia, said the ad was meant to highlight the product's appeal by showing a "humorous" situation where the gender roles could be reversed.

"We take our advertising responsibility very seriously and work with a range of partners to make sure our marketing meets and complies with all United Kingdom regulation".

The new rules follow a review by the ASA, published in 2017, which found that harmful stereotypes reinforced by advertising "can restrict the choices, aspirations and opportunities of children, young people and adults".

The ASA said it concluded that the ad presented gender stereotypes in a way that was likely to cause harm and therefore breached the Code.

The ASA said commercials will still be allowed to show "glamorous, attractive, successful, aspirational or healthy people or lifestyles".

The final scene shows a woman sitting on a bench next to a pram.

CNN Business has contacted Volkswagen (VLKAF) for comment.