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‘Bat Sandwich’ Ad Sparks Investigation For Making Light Of COVID-19 Grief
By Mikelle Leow, 11 Jan 2021
Video screenshot via BCF Australia
Australian viewers are hung up on an iffy campaign of a man eating a bat sandwich, causing the country’s Ad Standards to run an investigation on whether it is appropriate to air.
The advertisement by outdoor equipment brand Boating Camping Fishing (BCF), produced by creative agency The Monkey’s for Australia’s summer season, depicts how plans have been drastically stalled because a man ate a bat.
B&T notes that while early reports of the coronavirus had pointed to a live animal market in Wuhan as a possible source, it is not confirmed that is where the virus originated.
Richard Bean, executive director of Australia’s Ad Standards, told CMO that people had complained about the trivialization of “what is a very grave situation for many people in Australia and around the world.”
Others took issue with the “blame on the basis of nationality, as well as the language used in the advertisement.”
The watchdog is now investigating if the commercial has violated the Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) Code of Ethics.
Bean agreed that while it can be said the campaign is in line with Australia’s “larrikin sense of humor,” he reiterated that the COVID-19 pandemic’s “devastating impact” is real and should be “recognized in the complaint adjudication process.”
[via B&T, video and cover image via BCF Australia]
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