Tuesday, 30 June 2009

BMW Z4 advert banned in Australia

From the Melbourne Herald Sun 29 June 09
The Thought Police in Australia have finally gone mad. A new television ad for the latest BMW Z4 shows the car with painted tyres being driven round a warehouse, the tyre tracks eventually forming a picture. The ad's been banned in Australia because, according to the Advertising Standards Board its "encouraging hoon driving". Yeah? And the V8 Supercars, F1, MotoGP, Motocross, Dukes of Hazzard *don't*?
Quotes from internet forums on this decision by the Advertising Standards Board have been overwhelmingly negative, including:

- "I guess watching Top Gear is going to influence me to part take in a beach assault with the Royal marines in a Ford Fiesta? "
- "Promoting hooning? I think not and I suppose watching Underbelly is going to influence me and my family to undertake underworld killings...."
- "I'm so sick of this cr*p. It doesn't even directly affect me, but to think that stupid whinging do-gooders have this much power infuriates me."

- "I'm not for one second condoning idiotic behaviour like burnouts. But the sort of morons who do that sort of thing are going to do it anyway, irrespective of a BMW advertising campaign."
Luxury car manufacturer BMW has been left in a spin after its new "artistic" TV ad was banned for encouraging hoon driving.
Australia's advertising watchdog outlawed the ad for a BMW convertible because driving stunts shown in the clip would break Australian road rule laws.
The ad features the BMW Z4 coupe creating a giant artwork in a warehouse by driving with painted tyres, and includes the vehicle spinning its wheels and skidding.
Video: Watch the banned BMW promo
The clip, which has been used around the world, was made by artist Robin Rhode and famed film director Ridley Scott's son, Jake.
The ad sparked a backlash; one viewer told the Advertising Standards Bureau and Channel 9 the clip "would encourage car hoons to spin and burn their tyres."
The watchdog banned the ad on the basis it depicted illegal driving.
"The board noted that the advertisement does depict in a number of places the driver intentionally allowing the wheels of the car to lose traction and perform . . . a four-wheel drift," the bureau's judgment said.
BMW hit back, claiming it was art, not hooning.
"We believe the audience can distinguish between fantasy and reality," a statement from BMW to the board said.
BMW spokesman Toni Andreevski said the company accepted the decision but believed it could have successfully appealed.
"It is a bit of a case of a piece of art and the freedom of art being thwarted by Victoria's anti-hoon laws," he said.
"It is a shame that artistic expression would be caught by a quirk in the legislation. Safety is important to us, and we have agreed not to appeal."
Mr Andreevski said the company was disappointed it had been branded for hoon driving.

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