Australia is more than just a country of crocodiles, koalas, and outback. In fact, a recent tourist campaign set out to proactively grab visitors’ attention, but it may have turned out to be a bust. A tourism advertisement in Australia’s Northern Territory has been deemed ‘obscene’ by the country’s advert standards board. The ad states, “CU in the NT”, which goes on to read, “The top end. Different from the bottom end”.
The Aussie tourism campaign was developed by an independent tourism organization known as NT Official, a group not linked to the area’s official tourism board.
As such, Australia’s Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has chimed into the ad and retaliated, saying it has gotten complaints around the tagline, with statements from individuals stating the ad is offensive, degrading to women, and quite crass.
As the ASB has zero authority when it comes to enforcement, it has simply stated it agrees with these complaints and believes the ‘c-word’ implied in the advert is obscene and should not be used in any form of advertisements.
MSN reported that NT Official, the organization that developed and sold the tagline on a variety of merchandise, has stated to ASB that a dangerous precedent could be put in place if the advert was deemed to break regulation. The group has stated that a lot of other brands have used provocative acronyms in the past, and they pointed to the French Connection UK as an example.
NT Official went on to say that breaching regulation would also create an over-the-top moral view on the historical tradition of Aussie humor, specifically Australian larrikin. The group added that the products, nor their social media posts, have referenced or distinguished gender lines and the group does not support anything more than the beauty of Australia’s North Territory.
The organization also developed a clothing line with the tagline on it and a spokesperson for the group proclaimed they were “flat out like a lizard drinking” when it came to the numbers of requests they were fulfilling. NT Official also have stated the idea behind the racy tourism campaign was to draw a younger demographic to the area, where landmarks like the Ayers Rock and Uluru, are located.