Update on Boycott of Businesses Who Advertised During #50ShadesofAbuse on TV3

Firstly, thank you to the hundreds of you for taking up our request and communicating your concerns about TV3 broadcasting the R18 movie Fifty Shades of Grey during the school holidays recently. We just wanted to update you on some excellent progress.

We have sighted or received responses from a couple of the companies. Good responses were received from
AMI INSURANCE:
I can assure you that we don’t condone or support plot lines in any programmes that promote or glorify such themes and we are discussing with our media buying agency as the positioning of our brand is very important to us.”
LOTTO:
Our media placement policy is intended to ensure that our ads do not feature during certain shows. In light of feedback about last night’s placement, our Marketing team are reviewing our placement policies to ensure our advertising placements align with our brand values.”
TOWER INSURANCE:
Thank you for your message. We have undertaken to ensure that we don’t advertise in this type of programme again.”
FOODSTUFFS (who own New World and Pak’n’Save):
At the time media was booked the programming was undetermined. We are looking into how we can revisit media plans more regularly, and have asked the networks to keep us abreast of any changes so that we may review our placements.”
We also had a productive discussion with MAG AND TURBO who understood our concerns.

Unsatisfactory responses were received from MICHAEL HILL JEWELLERS:
After discussion with our media partners today, we have confirmed that the content that you are referring to, was rated and broadcast in accordance with New Zealand law. The placement of our advertising should not be confused with us condoning or condemning the content for which it sits within, more so a result of anticipated audience size and viewership.”
(So offensive and harmful content is irrelevant – it’s all about numbers and dollars apparently)
and MOLEMAP
“Following receipt of your complaints, we have investigated this further with our communications teams. ..Due to the way media buying works, when we purchase this media space we are not privy to what specifically will feature until much closer to the time of screening. This movie was broadcasted in accordance with routine NZ Law. (our emphasis added).
(So they were aware of the programme to be broadcast!)

BUSINESSES THAT HAVE NOT BOTHERED TO RESPOND
(as far as we are aware – please update us)
MONTEITHS * HARVEY NORMAN * JIF-IT & SIMPLE * SMITH AND SMITH * MEADOW FRESH * FARMERS * VODAFONE * REXONA * MCDONALDS * JENNY CRAIG * SLEEPYHEAD * BURGER KING * SUBARU * POSTIE PLUS * PERSIL * PAPER PLUS * BARGAIN BOX * GJ GARDINER * GEM FINANCE * P&O CRUISES * TURNERS CAR AUCTIONS * HUNTER FURNITURE
and the worst culprits…. MEDIAWORKS (TV3 plus MORE FM, THE EDGE, THE ROCK)

We would encourage you to continue to take whatever action you deem appropriate towards these businesses – whether that’s a long-term or short-term boycott, or to continue to contact them seeking a response.

IS THIS ALL WORTH IT?
Absolutely! Back in 2007 when TV3 aired Californication – a shocking show which featured excessive foul language and explicit sex talk (including a very young girl as the lead character’s daughter) and the opening scene featuring the lead character having sex with a nun in a church – 12 companies withdrew their advertising after our campaign. As a result, the programme was also pushed to a much later time slot.

As you can see, already there have been companies who have changed their policy to ensure they don’t support these types of programmes on free-to-air television. Our hope is that all the companies who advertised during Fifty Shades of Grey have reviewed their policies, and will be very wary of advertising during similar type programmes when we make them aware of the content of the programme and the negative feedback they will get.

Thanks for speaking up – and for being part of the solution – even the ‘small wins’! It is worth it for the sake of our families and society in general.


Bob McCoskrie
National Director