The Advertising Standards Authority has ruled that the poster for "Pussy", above with the line: "The drink's pure, it's your mind that's the problem" can not appear again in its current form. The posters made by Beattie McGuinness Bungay, received a total of 156 complaints, as people took offense to the name of the product. It's a bit FCUK all over again, with a dash of Branson mixed in as Holly and Sam Branson, Sir Richards kids, have invested in the company because "I love pussy in the morning".
The name of the drink is of course what people are complaining about, and Pussy Drinks insist they didn't intend to offend, and that "the slang meaning of the word was not one that [it] had created, and that any problems were only caused by those who were twisting the meaning of an innocent word". They also added that they "considered it ironic that complaints had been made about offence caused, given that the posters clearly stated that the drink was pure and it was the mind of the viewer that was the problem". Pussy Drinks insist that pussy means cat, and perhaps a kitten, and explain that the white can and name is in honor of a "gorgeous white pussycat owned by a family member as a child". It's quite an act when Pussy Drinks Ltd pretends not to know why people complained about its adverts .
1. & 2. Pussy Drinks Ltd considered it ironic that complaints had been made about offence caused, given that their posters clearly stated that the drink was pure and it was the mind of the viewer that was the problem. They said the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) stated that a pussy was "a cat, particularly a kitten" and that was the correct meaning of the word. They said cats possessed all the appropriate symbolism for their product and Pussy was cool, beautiful, feline and natural, with attitude, which explained their choice of name. They stated that until the OED changed the meaning of the word, they defended their right to advertise their product. They questioned why the complainants were automatically referring to the slang meaning of what they believed to be an innocent word. They said it was not their intention to offend, that the slang meaning of the word was not one that they had created, and that any problems were only caused by those who were twisting the meaning of an innocent word.
JC Decaux said they had received one complaint directly. The complainant had found the poster offensive and said there had been a great deal of discussion about the issue on social media sites.
3. They questioned which religion would be specifically offended by Pussy. They said the ancient Egyptians used to worship cats. They felt that people of a religious disposition tended to occupy an idyllic place away from the crassness that sadly existed in mainstream society and therefore felt it was surprising that the complaints had been made.
4. & 5. The advertisers questioned whether the complaints were from children and believed the complaints were from adults with an adult perspective on the slang meaning of the word. They felt that the complainants were assuming that children were aware of the slang meaning, and if that was the case, they considered it was likely that the children had heard the slang meaning from those adults, who now claimed they wished to protect those children. They stated that, to a child, a pussy was a cat or kitten and did not consider that was offensive. They said the inspiration for the product and white can design was a gorgeous white pussycat owned by a family member as a child.
6. The advertisers did not provide any further comments about the website content specifically.