Twenty four complaints were raised in respect of a tweet and two posters published by Adidas, which promoted its new sports bra range by using images of the naked breasts of several women of varying shapes, sizes and skin colours. Some complainants were concerned that the images objectified women; other complainants believed that the advertisements were not suitable to be placed in locations where they could be easily seen by children.

Adidas did not believe that the images were sexual and argued that they were simply designed to celebrate the female human form and to support diversity. Further, Adidas had also provided a copy of the advertisements at briefing stage and in advance of publishing them to CAP’s “Copy Advice Team”. The Team had agreed that the images were not objectifying although they had noted that the use of nudity in untargeted advertisements may be controversial.

Having considered the matter, the ASA concluded that the advertisements had not been appropriately or responsibly targeted and were therefore likely to cause offence.

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