After 189 complaints that the ads were demeaning to women and trivialized the war in Iraq, EasyJet "Weapons of Mass Distraction" ad gets the green light. From the ASA site:
"The advertisers stated that the advertisement was the latest of a series of topical, humorous and irreverent advertisements. The advertisers said they believed the advertisement was not sexist or demeaning to women; they asserted that they had received positive feedback from both male and female customers."
"They said they believed the advertisement did not trivialise the recent war in Iraq; the term "weapons of mass destruction" had been in the news for several weeks and they had changed the last word to "distraction" to highlight one of the attractions of being on holiday in the sun. The advertisers explained that they had thought of the phrase first and had sourced a picture to support it. The advertisers stated that the number of complaints received was a small proportion of those who had seen the advertisement.
The Evening Standard said they believed the advertisement was a witty play on a phrase in common usage and did not trivialise the Iraqi war. They belie! ved the woman's body was modestly clothed and not exaggerated. They said they believed the advertisement would appeal to their open-minded and modern readers and they had received no complaints. The Independent and Independent on Sunday said their readers were mostly young and open-minded people who would recognise the humour of the advertisement. The Telegraph and the Sunday Telegraph said they believed the advertisement used traditional "Carry On" humour and did not trivialise the war in Iraq. They said they had received four complaints but the vast majority of their readers had seen the advertisement as humorous and had not been offended. The Mail on Sunday said they had received one complaint. The Daily Express, the Daily Star and the Sunday Express said they had received no complaints. The Times and the Sunday Times said they had run the advertisement because of a fault in their internal procedures but had received no complaints from their readers about it. The Sun said! they had had a very positive response to the advertisement from their readers. The Metro said they believed the advertisement used a clever play on words and was not degrading to women. The Sunday Mirror did not respond."