Ad watchdog doesn’t slap Dick over “inappropriate”, innuendo-filled ad

A Dick Smith Foods advertisement featuring repeated use of the phrase “I love Dick” and a burning boat with asylum seekers has been deemed “inappropriate” though not racist by the Advertising Standards Board.

Mumbrella reports that the television ad, which was released on Australia Day this year, was considered “insensitive and inappropriate” by the ASB.  The complaint against the ad read, “This contained offensive material where Dick was seen to declare ‘no wonder everyone’s trying to get here!’ in front of images of actors, who I assume were supposed to be asylum seekers arriving on shore with the image of a burning and sinking boat in the background. Please get this racist crap off our screens. It’s offensive and inaccurate.”

The ad was created by Downwind Media and was also critical of US-owned food companies Kraft and MasterFoods. It was not granted a G-rating, meaning that it could not be screened during prime-time.

Dick Smith Foods said that the commercial was, “clearly satirical, juxtaposing the sad fact that immigration in Australia is a highly contentious, topical issue against the clearly farcical assertion that the Dick Smith Food’s product is the reason for the increasing number of immigrants.”

The company also said that Smith himself, a high-profile entrepreneur, and his organisation has donated “considerable financial support” to individuals seeking asylum in Australia.

The determination reached was that the ad did not breach advertising rules and “did not depict material which discriminated against or vilified any person or section of society” though was insensitive towards those seeking asylum who were victims of boat accidents.

Earlier in the year, Dick Smith Foods was threatened with legal action by Heinz over allegedly misleading claims on DSF’s cans of beetroot that targeted Heinz.

 

Image: crn.com.au