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31/08/2000

ITC SUSPEND SONY COMMERCIAL

TELEVISION watchdog, The ITC, has suspended a commercial for a Sony Digital Music Player, calling it “unacceptably offensive.”
The commercial featured a speeded-up sequence of a teenager being rushed to hospital and into Intensive Care for an emergency resuscitation attempt. The emergency team were shown preparing what at first appeared to be equipment for cardiac shock treatment but was, in fact, the music player. They touched the earpieces together (as if to check there was a current flowing through the contacts of a resuscitation unit) then placed them in his ears and played a blast of music. His body convulsed as if it had received an electric shock but his eyes were still glazed. The team loaded a different music file into the machine and "shocked" him again. This time he sat up as if resuscitated.
25 complaints were received regarding the commercial, 10 from people saying that it was “a distressing reminder of close personal experience.”
Advertising Agency Saatchi & Saatchi argued that the slightly surreal style of the film was unlike real hospitals, but it told the ITC that it had never been the intention to offend and that they sincerely regretted the distress to families which have been through experiences of this kind.
The decision reflects the ITC’s continuing commitment to monitor broadcasting for taste and decency.
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