The ad that sparked one of the year’s most ferocious Social Justice Warrior twitter storms has been deemed unlikely to cause “serious offence” or so-called body “shaming,” the advertising watchdog has said.
However, the protein supplements ad remains banned in its current form due to concerns that some of the health and nutrition claims are not authorised on the EU Register.
The statement from the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) reads: “We considered the claim ‘Are you beach body ready?’ prompted readers to think about whether they were in the shape they wanted to be for the summer and we did not consider that the accompanying image implied that a different body shape to that shown was not good enough or was inferior.
“We concluded that the headline and image were unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence.”
While the poster obviously invites consumers to think about their health, the agency said in specific reference to feminist concerns, adopting the trendy intersectional lexicon:
“We did not consider the image of the model would shame women who had different body shapes into believing they needed to take a slimming supplement to feel confident wearing swimwear in public”.
Concluding: “For that reason, we concluded the ad was not irresponsible.”
The previously unheard of company launched 74 giant London Underground posters and 4000 in-carriage ads in April this year. The ASA received nearly 400 complaints, a Change.org petition to “remove beach body ready advertisements” gained 70,000 signatures, and a very small protest was held in London.
Speaking to Breitbart London in April, the company’s Head of Global Marketing, Richard Staveley, said the company would not pander to a “vociferous, vocal minority of protesters.”
He said: “The campaign absolutely, categorically will not be pulled by Protein World. We have 300,000 happy customers and we will not pander to this a particularly vociferous minority.
“There’s no body shaming going on. Genuinely, 100 per cent this was driven by talking to our female customers and asking them what they want.”
The vicious campaign against Protein World actually benefited the firm. Their Facebook and Twitter followers jumped by 5,000 and 20,000 over the course of the campaign and 131 media clips were seen by an estimated 113,340,716 people. The £250,000 ad campaign added 20,000 customers and drove revenues in excess of £1 million in just four days and they has since taken the campaign to New York.
Speaking to Breitbart London later in the April, Stavely added: “We’ve taken a stand. Everybody thinks it’s wonderful that somebody has stood up to this bullshit. What’s the point in pulling a campaign when you know you’re in the right?”