Claire Beale on Advertising: Fizz is forced out of Soda Stream ads

 

We're used to TV ads using colour and noise so you might have noticed a new ad for Soda Stream for precisely the opposite reason.

A black screen with a few simple words on it and a sparse soundtrack of bottles being opened, it all sounds rather calming amid the riot of Christmas ads. But the impression belies the outrage that led to the ad's creation in the first place. Soda Stream had a much fizzier, janglier commercial all lined up and ready to go last month but the ad was banned just hours before it was due to go on air. The trouble was that it showed lots of plastic bottles self-combusting every time a fizzy drink was made in a Soda Stream glass bottle. The environmental message was clear. In fact, the ad was co-created by the iconoclastic former US ad creative Alex Bogusky, who noisily quit adland a couple of years ago to turn gamekeeper as an activist against excessive consumption.

So what was wrong with Bogusky's Soda Stream commercial? According to Clearcast, the body that pre-vets ads before they are allowed to be broadcast, the original ad was a "denigration of the bottled drinks market".

Think about that for a moment. One ad is banned because it implicitly attacks the multi-billion pound bottled drinks industry, which of course spends billions globally on advertising, including a big hunk of cash with the UK commercial broadcasters who fund Clearcast. Perhaps Clearcast pulled the commercial without coming under any pressure from rival drinks makers or its broadcasters. It probably did. But the accusations of protectionism that have followed were utterly predictable and undermine the vital role Clearcast plays in ensuring the ads we do see are fair, honest and decent. Can you really denigrate a whole product sector anyway? As one online commentator said: what next, train ads banned for denigrating the car industry? Or airline ads banned for denigrating ferries?

Claire Beale is editor of Campaign

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Sales Assistant / Buyer

£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company offers a range of ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisor

£15000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Advisors are r...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K: SThree: SThree were established in 1986....

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Manager

£40000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Compliance Manager is require...

Day In a Page

Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate