The government has asked Twitter and YouTube to take down two controversial ads by a body spray brand that sparked a massive controversy for their “derogatory” content. “The video is detrimental to the portrayal of women in the interest of decency or morality,” said the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, asking the social media platforms to immediately pull down all instances of this advertisement.
The action by the government came after the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) found the ads in “serious breach” of their code and against public interest.
The advertisement watchdog “suspended” two new Layer’r Shot advertisements “pending investigation” after their content was flagged by several social media users, saying it “promotes rape”. “Disrespectful towards women” was how many on the social media described the inappropriate ads.
One of the controversial ads shows a young couple in a bedroom when four men – who seemed to know the man in the room – enter without knocking. They then randomly ask a crude question to the woman before proceeding to take the ‘Shot’ perfume kept on a table, hinting they were talking about the spray the whole time.
The other ad features the same set of men in a convenience store, standing behind a woman. The men then heard saying “there are four of us, but there’s only one, who will get a shot”. It then shows he visibly shocked woman turning to them when one of them out to grab a single bottle of ‘Shot’ perfume kept on a rack.
Delhi Commission For Women (DCW) chairperson Swati Maliwal tweeted earlier in the day that the advertisements reflected “toxic masculinity in its worst form”. She also said that she has taken up the matter with the Delhi Police and Information and Broadcasting Ministry.
Fuming at cringe worthy ads of the perfume ‘Shot’. They show toxic masculinity in its worst form and clearly promote gang rape culture!The company owners must be held accountable. Have issued notice to Delhi Police and written letter to I&B Minister seeking FIR and strong action. pic.twitter.com/k8n06TB1mQ
— Swati Maliwal (@SwatiJaiHind) June 4, 2022