An artificial turf company forced to remove a billboard showing a bikini-clad woman with the tagline “discover the best” poked fun at those who complained – and unveiled a new ad showing a naked man instead.
Great Grass MCR, based in Failsworth, Oldham, was forced to remove a billboard in November last year after the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), the UK’s independent regulator of advertising across all media, ruled against it.
The poster has the headline ‘Artificial Grasse Experts’. Below that is an image of a woman wearing a thong that reads, “Perfect 365 days a year… Get sex by the best.”
The giant billboard was erected by the company at a busy junction in nearby Hollinwood, where Oldham Road meets the M60 motorway.
The company then put up a replacement sign to mock the people who complained, even offering customers a 10 percent discount stating “NOT OFFENDED.”
An artificial turf company has been forced to take down a billboard showing a bikini-clad woman with the slogan ‘discover the best’ and mock those who complained – and instead unveiled a new ad showing a naked man
Great Grass MCR, based in Failsworth, Oldham, was forced to pull down a billboard in November last year after the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), the UK’s independent regulatory body for advertising in all media, ruled against it
Speaking directly to the four, the new billboard read: ‘Apologies to the offended 4. You found it offensive, we all found it funny. Just because you’re offended doesn’t mean you’re right.”
Today bosses put up a new poster with a handsome topless man. The sign now reads, “Great abs, great grass” – while adding that their artificial turf is “perfect 365 days a year.”
The ASA ruled that the company’s bikini billboard made “objectified and stereotyped women as sexual objects.”
In a statement following their ruling, they went on to say that the hoarding, close to the company’s headquarters in Oldham, Greater Manchester, was ‘likely to cause a serious breach’.
They added, “The ad must not reappear in its current form.
“We have told Great Grass MCR Ltd t/a Great Grass to ensure that their future advertisements were socially responsible and did not cause serious or widespread offense.”
In response, Great Grass said they had used the slogan ‘Leave the best’ in the past, adding that there had only been three complaints at the time of the ruling.
And so they believed that most of the spectators, perhaps in the thousands, were not offended but found it amusing.
They assumed that further complaints mostly came from people on social media encouraging others who probably hadn’t even seen it to voice their concerns.
In response to the ASA, the company said “Get covered by the best” was a slogan it had used for years and the claimed “perfect 365 days a year” meant it believed their grass was perfect all year round.
The ASA said: ‘Great Grass said it was remarkable that there had been only three complaints when the ad had been seen by thousands of people.
Today bosses put up a new poster with a handsome topless man. The sign now reads: ‘Great abs, great grass’ – while adding that their artificial turf is ‘perfect 365 days a year’
So they thought most people weren’t offended by the ad, but found it amusing. They thought the complaints were generated by people on social media encouraging others who probably hadn’t even seen the ad to complain about it.
“Great Grass also said it was wrong and offensive to the transgender community to assume the person in the ad was a woman.”
A spokesman for Great Grass said so Manchester evening news in November: “The ad was a bit light-hearted and not intended to offend anyone. There are a number of people who posted the ad on social media with positive reactions.
“We thought with all the troubles in the world right now that anything that can bring a smile is a welcome distraction. It’s a very busy intersection and the ad has been seen by thousands upon thousands of people.
To the three who found it offensive, our apologies. For the fifty thousand who thought it was funny, sorry it has to go.’