The Ad Standards Community Panel has spectacularly failed women and children in its final determination that the huge sexually explicit OnlyFans billboard, which faced a busy intersection at Osborne Park, Western Australia, is consistent with community standards, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
ACL’s Chief Executive Officer, Michelle Pearse said, “The self-regulatory scheme of the Ad Standards Panel is a case of the fox guarding the henhouse. Self-regulation has failed us all, particularly women and children. State governments must intervene and ensure that outdoor advertising is not harmful, exploitative, or illegal if displayed in a workplace.
“The 12 x 3-meter billboard exposed children and young people to graphic sexual imagery which invited viewers to a pornographic social media platform. Of course, there is nothing parents or caregivers could do to prevent their children from seeing the huge billboard.
“The Advertisement is not currently displayed but that is not the point. The Ad Standards Panel have endorsed a repeat of this harmful billboard at any time and have given permission for other billboards equally exploitative of women and harmful to children to be displayed.
“There were over 350 complaints about the billboard and a petition with 6,000 signatures which the Independent Reviewer, calling on the Panel to reconsider its decision, claimed was evidence of strong community feeling against the billboard. Stunningly, the Panel has determined that the exploitative image is consistent with community standards.
“The advertisement would be sexual harassment if displayed in a WA workplace, under occupational health and safety provisions.
“The Ad Standards Panel should be abolished, and the standards of outdoor advertisements should be subject to government regulation. The Panel is not fit for purpose. It has sent a clear message in the OnlyFans ruling that it’s acceptable to sexually objectify women,” Mrs. Pearse said.