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"Irresponsible" Jack Wills ads banned by ASA

Lauretta Roberts
01 June 2016

Jack Wills, which styles itself as the brand of choice for students, has had its latest ads banned by the Advertising Standards Authority for sexually suggestive imagery and text.

The brand's latest catalogue features imagery of young men and women in their underwear at a "pyjama party", drinking and dancing in a bedroom with text that reads: "Whatever your choice, you can be sure it's what's underneath that counts. Midnight mischief."

Another image shows a topless male model in bed with a young woman, and a further image of a group in bed with a woman whose bra strap has fallen down onto her shoulder. The images appear in the brand's latest catalogue which is mailed to customers.

Jack Wills: ASA rules younger teenagers could have access to images

Jack Wills: ASA rules younger teenagers could have access to images

A parent of teenagers is understood to have brought the complaint to the ASA stating that younger teenagers could have been exposed to the images. Jack Wills argued that the parent was the recipient of the catalogue and that its target audience was 18-24 year olds.

However the ASA dismissed the argument, saying the images were not just "playful" but sexually suggestive, and ruled that they could not be used again in their current form. "Because we understood that younger teenagers could have both direct and indirect access to the catalogue, and because we considered the images and text were sufficiently sexualised to be inappropriate for that audience, we concluded that the ad was irresponsible and that it breached the Code," the ASA said,

From now on Jack Wills will print on the envelope of its catalogues that subscribers must be at least 18 years old; it already has an under-18 restriction on its website for receiving communications and catalogues are distributed in opaque envelopes.





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