KAZAM's smartphone advert banned by the ASA

By Jay Jay

At a time when KAZAM is flying high in Europe with the launch of several new smartphones and tablets ahead of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the smartphone maker's expansion plans in the UK hit a major roadblock yesterday.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned KAZAM's new TV commercial for its Tornado 348 handset, following a series of complaints from viewers.

Noting that the ad violated the BCAP Code rule 4.2 that covers harm and offence, the ASA stated that "much of the ad focused entirely on the actor in her underwear, including scenes that featured several close-up shots that lingered over her breasts, buttocks and lips," that was more sexually suggestive than warranted.

The ASA also believed that the overall style of the add was aimed at objectifying women. "This was heightened by the suggestive nature of the music and voice-over and further reinforced because the focus on the woman bore no relevance to the advertised product," it added. KAZAM's contention that the aim of the advertisement was to project how the actor failed to notice the slimmest smartphone in the world while dressing up didn't hold much water though.

The fact that it had aired the commercial during programmes less prone to be watched by kids also failed to turn ASA's decision.

The decision would harm rather than reinforce KAZAM's plans of expanding into the UK smartphone and tablet markets. It could, however, hope that its improved performance in Europe would have a trickle effect in the long run.

Watch the banned advert here and tell us if you agree with the ruling:


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