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ASA banning cycle safety advert

IanLDIanLD Posts: 423
edited February 2014 in Road general
ASA have decided to ban a Cycle Scotland advert for showing some riders not wearing a helmet and for riding a safe distance out from the kerb...

Cycle Scotland have attempted to put them right, but it appears they have completely failed to take on board the fact that the advert was about promoting safe passing.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-25926572
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  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    She is quite a way out from the kerb though lol

    I also feel it would have been better if she were wearing a helmet in an ad for safety.
    I am not for making helmet wearing compulsory but I do think its safer to wear one.

    Its difficult in an ad because you have to make a very exact choice.
    By not wearing a helmet in a safety ad you are kind of saying its safer to not wear one!

    There seems a lot wrong with that photo to me. Its all a bit odd and not really helping to get the message (which is a good one) across. It could have been a lot better thought out.
    It looks more like a joke/funny than a safety poster.
  • IanLDIanLD Posts: 423
    It isn't a poster. That is a still from the video...
  • smidsysmidsy Posts: 5,273
    The ad has to be a joke.

    It effectively says 'See lady cyclist - think she is an ugly munter!'

    It is also has a very dated (70's) look about it - so helmets were not even thought about then.
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • IanLDIanLD Posts: 423
    If you read the article, you'll see that it was a video. That is a still taken from one part of it.

    We've had more of the advert shown on BBC Scotland this morning which shows other cyclists with helmets.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    Oh ok, same difference though.
    I have still not seen the video but have now read the text and I think I agree with the ASA.

    I do not see what limiting the uptake of cycling has to do with safety, and saying its safer not to wear a helmet because car drivers will treat you with more care is ridiculous!

    I think the main reason helmets should not be compulsory is because cyclist need to understand why they are wearing them and then make a conscious decision to wear one, not wear them because they have to.
  • smidsysmidsy Posts: 5,273
    The helmet thing is not even about compulsory v not. If you are going to mount a campaign for safer cycling it makes no sense to argue against a helmet. Wearing one can only improve your chances (even if in reality it ends up making no difference).

    Perception is key.
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    edited January 2014
    smidsy wrote:
    The ad has to be a joke.

    It effectively says 'See lady cyclist - think she is an ugly munter!'

    It is also has a very dated (70's) look about it - so helmets were not even thought about then.

    There is a lot wrong with it (ok I have only seen the still).

    Why is road so wide?
    Why is it a soft top Merc?
    Why does it have an odd number plate?
    Why is there no other traffic around?
    Why is she looking at the car?
    Why is she freewheeling?
    Whay is the text in a silly font?

    If that was on a normal width road and there was another cyclist and car coming in the other direction........... Boom.
    Its just a bad ad full stop.

    I guess by not wearing a helmet her red hair may be a safety advantage though :wink:
  • jimothy78jimothy78 Posts: 1,407
    Surely the idea of the advert is to get car drivers to treat cyclists with more care - trying to get them to see us as vunerable. I think the girl with no helmet is a deliberate act to increase this feeling of vulnerability - drivers may presumably show more empathy with her than a MAMIL on a 10-grand carbon penis-extension.
  • amaferangaamaferanga Posts: 6,789
    Do most cyclists in Holland and Denmark wear helmets?
    More problems but still living....
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    jimothy78 wrote:
    Surely the idea of the advert is to get car drivers to treat cyclists with more care - trying to get them to see us as vunerable. I think the girl with no helmet is a deliberate act to increase this feeling of vulnerability - drivers may presumably show more empathy with her than a MAMIL on a 10-grand carbon penis-extension.

    10-grand carbon penis-extension envy?
    When did you last even see a Mamil on a 10k bike?

    If its encouraging drivers to treat a woman not wearing a helmet with more care then its kind of saying you can take chances with her helmet wearing husband husband further up the road lol.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    amaferanga wrote:
    Do most cyclists in Holland and Denmark wear helmets?

    There are lots of differences between Holland and UK though so that has little relevance IMO.

    Do you wear a helmet?
  • On the ASA website they state,

    "Our work includes acting on complaints and proactively checking the media to take action against misleading, harmful or offensive advertisements."

    and in the mision statement they say,

    "Our mission is to ensure that advertising in all media is legal, decent, honest and truthful, to the benefit of consumers, business and society."

    I don't see any mention of dictating moral opinions that have no basis in law.
  • Surprised at the reactions here.

    Anything that promotes cycle safety has to be a good thing. Who cares if she's wearing a helmet or not? Many cyclists in the UK do not wear one. Soak it up.

    The 5 people that complained are probably highly selfish car drivers who couldn't give a toss about cycle safety and want all bicycles off the roads, full stop.
  • hibsterhibster Posts: 58
    "The national cycle promotion organisation for Scotland told the ASA wearing a helmet was a personal choice for the individual - a fact it considered was reflected in the advert with footage of various cyclists both with, and without, helmets."

    a lot of people itt talking as if every cyclist is helmetless
  • We understood that UK law did not require cyclists to wear helmets or cycle at least 0.5 metres from the kerb. However, under the Highway Code it was recommended as good practice for cyclists to wear helmets. Therefore, we considered that the scene featuring the cyclist on a road without wearing a helmet undermined the recommendations set out in the Highway Code. Furthermore, we were concerned that whilst the cyclist was more than 0.5 metres from the kerb, they appeared to be located more in the centre of the lane when the car behind overtook them and the car almost had to enter the right lane of traffic. Therefore, for those reasons we concluded the ad was socially irresponsible and likely to condone or encourage behaviour prejudicial to health and safety.

    The above from the ASA ruling. I don't think anyone here needs telling how ridiculous it is that they said it was "dangerous" because the car had to overtake in the other lane. I have no doubt whomever made this ruling has never ridden a bike on the road in their lives.
  • I've complained to the ASA.

    I suppose that I could forgive them for saying "it's an advert to promote safety; so you should also promote the wearing of a helmet" - even though I think that their reasoning is wrong (and FWVLIW, I wear a helmet; I'd encourage everyone else to; but that's *my* decision, just as it should be *theirs*; it's not for the ASA to dictate that helmets MUST be worn in ads).

    But the "she's cycling too far from the kerb" reasoning that the ASA gives for upholding the complaint of 5 viewers is absolute cobblers. And dangerous cobblers at that. Experienced cyclists know that you are safer "taking the lane" - or at least riding in secondary (where the LHS wheels of the cars travel). Cycling too close to the kerb is the hazard - potholes, detritus, and cars ignoring you - or worse, being emboldened by your positioning to carry out an unsafe close pass (for example, with oncoming traffic in the other lane).

    The ASA must have allowed Clarkson to write that decision for them.
    They use their cars as shopping baskets; they use their cars as overcoats.
  • markhewitt1978markhewitt1978 Posts: 7,614
    edited January 2014
    Direct link to the ruling http://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudicat ... 38570.aspx

    "[the cyclist] appeared to be more than 0.5 metres from the parking lane. " what?
  • Buckie2k5Buckie2k5 Posts: 600
    To be fair making a cycle safety advert and not having the cyclist wear a helmet is just stupid. What did they expect.
  • lakesludditelakesluddite Posts: 1,319
    We understood that UK law did not require cyclists to wear helmets or cycle at least 0.5 metres from the kerb. However, under the Highway Code it was recommended as good practice for cyclists to wear helmets. Therefore, we considered that the scene featuring the cyclist on a road without wearing a helmet undermined the recommendations set out in the Highway Code. Furthermore, we were concerned that whilst the cyclist was more than 0.5 metres from the kerb, they appeared to be located more in the centre of the lane when the car behind overtook them and the car almost had to enter the right lane of traffic. Therefore, for those reasons we concluded the ad was socially irresponsible and likely to condone or encourage behaviour prejudicial to health and safety.

    The above from the ASA ruling. I don't think anyone here needs telling how ridiculous it is that they said it was "dangerous" because the car had to overtake in the other lane. I have no doubt whomever made this ruling has never ridden a bike on the road in their lives.

    That's exactly what I thought when I saw their comments - you don't ride a bike on British roads do you. 'Socially Irresponsible'? Get a grip, there's no issue with that still from the ad, the road is wider than you normally find in this Country, and looks quiet enough to be riding that far from the kerb - and the car hasn't had to cross to the oncoming carriageway (not that there's anything wrong with having to do that, you would have to if you were overtaking another car - or a horse!).

    And besides - isn't this primarily an ad for motorists, not cyclists? It's not clear from the BBC article (who describe it as "A television advert promoting safe cycling"). Not having the context of seeing the whole advert in it's entirity, I'm a bit confused.
  • dodgydodgy Posts: 2,890
    Why hasn't the soft top driver got a helmet on?

    It sounds like I'm taking the piss, I am - sorta. Imagine the reaction on asking that question in a pub to motorists? Then ask the same question about why the girl isn't wearing a helmet? 'sage nodding of heads' to the second question?
  • MoonbikerMoonbiker Posts: 1,706
    Don't see anything wrong with the advert.

    At least no ones complainined yet she isn't wearing a hig viz jacket at or has "inappropaite clothing". :roll:

    I'd probably ride in the same postion on that wide road with hardly any traffic am I doing it wrong?
  • Clothing was mentioned "not wearing a helmet or any other safety attire"
  • smidsysmidsy Posts: 5,273
    Moonbiker wrote:
    I'd probably ride in the same postion on that wide road with hardly any traffic am I doing it wrong?

    About 1m from kerb or 1/3rd into the road is about right.
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • If you base it on the HC then you must be consistent. The HC shows that, to overtake a cyclist, you give the same room as a car. That will require you to enter the other carriageway
    My blog: http://www.roubaixcycling.cc (kit reviews and other musings)
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  • MoonbikerMoonbiker Posts: 1,706
    edited January 2014
    Is that women on the antiques roadshow title credits a menance on the road? I think she was riding in a fairly primary road postion when the car with the grandfather clock passes? :o
    No helmet & no saftey attire either.

    Also the load didn't look secured safely in the car, police should of pulled him over for that.
  • dodgydodgy Posts: 2,890
    The ASA also referred to the side of the road as 'the parking lane'. You couldn't make this up :D
  • You couldn't make it up!! Who the hell do the ASA think they are? Bunch of incompetents. Where do I look for the parking lane, not seen it mentioned in any relevant literature before. Not seen the whole add, anyone know of a link? Pic from vid looks good, almost looks like it could be from that fantasy country, you know, Holland, where the cycling is safe!
  • Sorry, got me really pi55ed off now. Just looked at their web site, adjudication passed because 5, yes, just 5 people complained, surely there must be a higher number than this to cause this to happen. An ad that is designed to help/ encourage, potentially thousands of cyclists can be pulled because five people didn't agree with it. You really couldn't make it up. Even better, they are very keen to make it easy to complain about other people on their website, but, almost impossible to complain about them, surprising, yeah right!
  • diydiy Posts: 6,680
    I think it gives a poor message. The message would be better delivered with a cyclist who was also taking responsibility for her personal safety. She is probably 12-18" further away from the curb than I would be, but then I'd be happy with half the space the car gave.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    Well summed up diy.

    Also, she is probably going pretty slowly and not ideal to overtake on a bike.
    The car is giving her such a wide birth because of where she is. If she were a sensible distance from the kerb, the car would be more likely to be a sensible distance from her.

    if that were a real photo of a real situation I would say that the driver is giving her verbal and thats why she is looking across at him.
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