Remember that Yellow Pages ad on tele lately where Crackers The Clown gets the living crap beaten out of him by a bunch of feral kids at a birthday party. Well, it’s causing the clown community a whole lot of anguish.
So being clowns, they responded like only a clown would. They complained to the Australian Advertising Standards Bureau:
I am a children entertainer and it is not ok to have children abuse us, kick or jump on us. I have a few friends who have been hurt doing parties, and therefore I feel that this image that Sensis is portraying is that it is ok to hurt people. It is not ok specially when this is our income.
Not only does this ad encourage violence toward the clown, but it scares me because I am a children’s entertainer who usually goes out dressed as a clown and entertains children at birthday parties.
This clown even includes evidence that the ad is causing kids to attack his colleagues:
I heard of one instance that happened on the weekend where the entertainer quoted the following “I did a party on Sunday with the worst behaved kids and parents EVER! They quoted that ad, ATTACK THE CLOWN, my hubby was holding one at arms length as the cherub tried to kick him in the chest. Mum and dad sat watching, drinking and thinking it was all just sooooo funny.”
No laughing matter.
The ASB Board dismissed the complaint, finding that the advertisement did not breach the Code. You can download the full case report PDF from here. You can also read more advertising complaints at the ASB website.
Refused-Classification takes a look at some of the complaints that were upheld.