Deccan Chronicle

Body spray ads with 'rape jokes' draws Centre's ire

Deccan Chronicle.| Vineeta Pandey

Published on: June 5, 2022 | Updated on: June 5, 2022

Youtube, Twitter asked to take down videos immediately

A screengrab of the advertisement (Twitter)

A screengrab of the advertisement (Twitter)

New Delhi: Union Information and Broadcasting ministry on Saturday asked social media platforms Twitter and YouTube to take down "derogatory" advertisement of men’s perfume Layer’r Shot after people criticised the content of the ad for promoting sexual assault culture. The Ministry of I&B (MIB) has also asked the TV channels to pull down this ad immediately.

"It has come to the notice of MIB India that an inappropriate and derogatory advertisement of a deodorant is circulating on social media. The Ministry has asked Twitter and YouTube to immediately pull down all instances of this advertisement. The TV channel on which it appeared has already pulled it down on the directions of MIB," the ministry said.

The two advertisements for the Body Spray got massive criticism online for its contents. In one of the ads, four young men are in a cosmetic section of a shopping store with a lady in front of them. Upon seeing the last bottle of Layer'r "Shot" perfume in the rack, the men discuss who will take the "Shot" which sounds uncomfortable to the lady.  "Hum chaar aur ye ek.. Shot kon lega" as the men discussed the lady turns back and gives them an angry glance only to find that the men are talking about ‘Shot’ the body spray.

In the second ad, a couple is shown in the bedroom when four male friends of the man enter the room and ask, "Shot mara lagta hai" to which he responds, "ha mara na". In the next scene, a friend says, "ab humari baari" and goes on to pick up the "Shot" body spray kept in the room.

Angry with the content, people lashed out at the company that made the ad and the Advertising Standards Council (ASCI) of India that approved these ads. "How does this kind of ads get approved, sick and outright disgusting. Is @layerr_shot full of perverts?" asked one woman on Twitter while several others tagged ASCI to "stop this "filth immediately".

"Thank you for tagging us. The ad is in serious breach of the ASCI Code and is against public interest. We have taken immediate action and notified the advertiser to suspend the ad, pending investigation.," the ASCI said, adding both government and ASCI have intervened to stop the further publishing of the offending advertisement of Layerr Shot.

In a letter sent to Twitter and YouTube the Ministry of I&B (MIB) said the videos posted on their platforms "are detrimental to the portrayal of women in the interest of decency or morality and in violation of the Rule 3 (1)b(ii) of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021 which provides that the users shall not host, display, upload, modify, publish, transmit, store, update or share any information which is insulting or harassing on the basis of gender.

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