Uk places ban on gender stereotypes in Ads

According to this article:

This month, a new set of rules that ban gender stereotypes in ads came into effect in the UK.

From now on, ads shown anywhere in Britain must not include “gender stereotypes which are likely to cause harm or serious or widespread offence”.

I don’t live in Uk so am not aware of what their ads have traditionally been like to feel need to come to this.
To me while they are probably well intended it seems a bit much.:woman_shrugging:

Are they just getting rid of the negative stereotypes (like the distasteful Russian ad in the link) or are they getting rid of “gender” altogether…
Isn’t gender stereotypes sometimes good thing?

From the Advertising Standards Agency:

Scenarios in ads likely to be problematic under the new rule include:

  • An ad that depicts a man with his feet up and family members creating mess around a home while a woman is solely responsible for cleaning up the mess.
  • An ad that depicts a man or a woman failing to achieve a task specifically because of their gender e.g. a man’s inability to change nappies; a woman’s inability to park a car.
  • Where an ad features a person with a physique that does not match an ideal stereotypically associated with their gender, the ad should not imply that their physique is a significant reason for them not being successful, for example in their romantic or social lives.
  • An ad that seeks to emphasise the contrast between a boy’s stereotypical personality (e.g. daring) with a girl’s stereotypical personality (e.g. caring) needs to be handled with care.
  • An ad aimed at new mums which suggests that looking attractive or keeping a home pristine is a priority over other factors such as their emotional wellbeing.
  • An ad that belittles a man for carrying out stereotypically ‘female’ roles or tasks.

The rule and its supporting guidance doesn’t stop ads from featuring:

  • A woman doing the shopping or a man doing DIY.
  • Glamorous, attractive, successful, aspirational or healthy people or lifestyles.
  • One gender only, including in ads for products developed for and aimed at one gender.
  • Gender stereotypes as a means to challenge their negative effects.

So, not too much to worry about for even the most apoplectic traditionalist, I’d have thought.

I take it that “free speech” as we know it in the US (though not absolute) isn’t a big thing in the UK. What’s the big issue with causing “offense”?

It sounds like maybe some of the ads on uk tv may have in the past been mean spirited to require the ruling.

I think it partly reflects what appears to be a growing problem, especially with teenagers (of both genders), of “body image” and the need to take greater care with the images/presentations they see in advertising.

Yeah,I guess shows like Love Island don’t exactly help with peoples body image.

I think we have to be aware of the mindset which judges ‘bad stereotypes’. This mindset is the current religion of political correctness which does affect society in so many ways.

So for example feminism is part of the politically correct religion and therefore one of the ‘stereotypes’ that is banned in this policy is the showing of a boy more scholastic and academically successful than a girl.

Yet why is this the accepted ‘stereotype’?
Actually girls are more successful now at school than boys so isn’t the stereotype the other way around? Of course we are not going to ban the reverse because it is contrary to the victim politics of political correctness. Why is this religion ruling?

I have observed in the west the placating of feminism in ads over the last 3 decades with increasingly ads showing wrong, aggressive or incompetent males as opposed to exasperated, clever correct females. Again, should this stereotype be banned? Well political correctness dictates that these ads not only are ok but they should be promoted.

There are many examples. The controversy over the recent Gillette ads is but the latest.

Of course many people don’t see anything wrong with a government forcing politically correct values onto the ads we all watch. Others see this as the blatant promotion of a foreign religion which at its core is a bad religion.

There are dozens of examples like these that cause society to fragment with some people turning their backs on this attempted ‘common culture’.

In Australia many people just mute the sound when the adverts come on.
Or they record the shows they want to watch and fast forward or edit out the adverts.
Still more like myself go online for our news and entertainment where either there are no ads or we can control their impact.

SEXIST Ads BANNED From UK: No Gender Stereotypes

UK Bans Offensive Gender Stereotypes in Adverts

Fathers & Sons React To Controversial Gillette Commercial

Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.

-Grouch Marx


Reminds me of an ad I saw earlier this year. I don’t even remember what it was about, but the entire ad involved boys doing typically feminine things and girls doing typically male things, like that was the norm. For example it had a young black boy twirling in ballet and a young white girl playing football (and demolishing people). A bit overt cultural conditioning, imo.

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Some might find it to “cause harm or serious widespread offense”.

I think you know as well as I do that this is a one-direction street. Masculine man=bad. Feminine man=good. Feminine woman=bad, masculine woman=good. Practically says so in the guidelines.


IOW, ads that degrade men and continue to have misandric tones are A-OK. All other ads that make fun showing marginalized person made fool of, are off the table.

Yes, hopefully they also include banning television programming like sitcoms with negative, stereotypical portrayals of men as bumblers and idiots, as has been all the rave for the past 40 years


Showing my age, I’m afraid, I’ve never seen it, neither of us are great TV-watchers.

Meanwhile, if the guidelines lead to more intelligent and creative adverts, we’re all winners.

You’re not missing much there, It’s brain rot. I’m past the age group that it is aimed at by some years as well but younger work colleagues blather about nonsense like these shows all the time.

And taking credit as though you are the cause of every sunny day.

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We’re all born with certain advantages in life, two of mine seem to be even more advantageous as life has gone along - one is that I’m easily bored by TV, the other is that I’ve no ‘sweet tooth’. :smiley:

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