Wicked Campers’ defiance
‘‘...the complaints board said they had not been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and to society and were likely to cause serious or widespread offence.’’
The boss of Wicked Campers is silently refusing to comply with rulings against its offensive slogans.
A fresh complaint against the company was upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) last week, after a complainant labelled two of its slogans as ‘‘offensive’’ and ‘‘crude’’.
It was the latest in at least nine complaints brought against the company in 12 months, most of which have been upheld, with orders for the slogans to be removed.
An ASA spokeswoman said the company had not responded to any of its requests, and, as far as she was aware, the company had not complied with its rulings.
The latest complaint related to a window sticker which reads: ‘‘Attention Thieves. Thou Shalt Not Steal. God Is Watching You Thieving C..., and a painted message on the side of the van, which says: ‘‘Let’s Throw a Cat on The Barbie’’.
The complainant said the window sticker advertisement used inappropriate language and was offensive to Christians and women, while the painted message gave the impression that animal cruelty was acceptable or amusing.
The ASA complaints board upheld the complaint, but said it had not received any response from Wicked Campers.
It expressed concern at the the company’s repeated refusal to respond to complaints, and their refusal to engage with, and respect, the principles of self-regulation.
‘‘Taking into account the wide range of people that could potentially view the advertisements, the complaints board said they had not been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and to society and were likely to cause serious or widespread offence.’’
The board said there had been a number of previous complaints about Wicked Campers.
Last year, three of Wicked Campers’ most offensive vehicles were banned from New Zealand’s roads, following a landmark ruling from the Classification Office.
It meant that the vans were banned from public places in New Zealand and Wicked could face a fine of up to $200,000 per offence if it continued to use them.
Wicked Campers is refusing to comply with rulings against its offensive slogans.