Copestick Murray falls foul of Advertising Standards Authority

A complaint over a tube advert for Copestick Murray’s ‘i heart wines’ campaign has been upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) after it was deemed to encourage excessive drinking.

Copestick Murray’s tube advert for its ‘i heart wines’ range

Alcohol Concern and three members of the public complained to the ASA over the UK producers and distributor’s poster for its ‘i heart wine’ campaign, which appeared via a series of posters on the London Underground in April and May 2018.

The poster showed images of three bottles of wine accompanied by text that stated: “i heart wines – Not every day, you understand. Not all the time. Just sometimes. You know, in moderation. As a treat. With food, ideally. Or a film. Maybe over a chinwag with friends. Or if it’s sunny. That tends to work quite well. Also on hols. Sometimes at the weekend. But you know. Not every day. Obvs”.

The complaint alleged that the ad encouraged excessive drinking by trivialising the justifications for drinking on a regular basis.

Defending the ad’s tone and placement, Copestick Murray said it believed the text “struck a balance between the fun and light-hearted tone they sought to create and the awareness they wanted to reflect that drinking alcohol could be harmful”, delivering the message that while it might be pleasurable, it should not be drunk every day.

The team said it had taken advice from the Copy Advice team (CAP), who believed the references to drinking alcohol were “likely to be acceptable”.

The ASA acknowledged that Copestick has consulted the CAP team, but nevertheless upheld the complaint, ruling that while consumers could interpret the statements as “encouragement to avoid excessive drinking”, the “casual tone and playful wording” implied “some kind of collusion between the advertiser and reader”.

It concluded that rather than encouraging an avoidance of excessive drinking, it instead “trivialised” drinking and the justifications that could be given for it.

“Because we considered the ad would be interpreted by consumers as encouraging excessive drinking, we concluded that it breached the Code.”

2 Responses to “Copestick Murray falls foul of Advertising Standards Authority”

  1. Matt says:

    What a crock.
    Wine is meant to be fun. It is meant to be involved in socialisation.
    Relax UK peeps

  2. Peter says:

    alcohol concern & three people, who are probably non drinkers, out of a population of 62 million………………some people will find offense at anything, it would be nice if the complainants identified themselves so that more liberal people could see if it was the same people complaining on every issue.

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