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As Heinz Boycott Begins, 1,500 Sign Petition to Reinstate Ad


Following yesterday's calls for a boycott of Heinz by Stonewall's Ben Summerskill in The Guardian over its pulling of a Deli Mayo ad that features a male kiss because of 200 complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority, an online petition was set up by Sam Bannister asking Heinz to reinstate the ad.

SummerskillThe petition reads: "We petition Heinz to reinstate its Deli Mayo TV advertisement following complaints from 200 people as to its 'offensive' and 'inappropriate' content. We feel that the decision to withdraw the advert is wrong in the face of a small number of narrow-minded individuals. By doing so, Heinz have given the impression that they would prefer to cater for the homophobic than the free-thinking, and the decision has provoked upset, brand distrust and outrage among the LGBT community and outside of it. Do not bow down to these homophobic individuals."

As of this writing, the petition had received nearly 1,500 signatures.

Nigel Dickie, a spokesman for Heinz UK, told The Independent that the decision to pull the ad was made form "consumer feedback" and not because of the complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority: "Heinz is a global company and we respect all universal rights. The advertisement was intended to be humorous, not designed to cause offence to anyone. Clearly it failed in its intent to amuse and that is why we took the decision to withdraw it."

The ad, if you missed it, AFTER THE JUMP...

Gay Rights Leader Slams Heinz for Pulling Gay Ad [tr]
Heinz Deli Mayo Ad Pulled in UK [tr]
Heinz Deli Mayo is Perfect for all Kinds of Homes [tr]

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  1. Heinz=Kerry=Flipflop

    Posted by: Dean | Jun 25, 2008 8:08:47 AM

  2. lol - lovin it Dean

    Posted by: lol | Jun 25, 2008 8:25:02 AM

  3. This boycott is idiotic. At least Heinz had the gall to make the commercial in the first place and air it--the fact that they pulled it makes it kind of a zero-sum game, but are we now supposed to boycott every single company that doesn't use gay imagery in their ads?

    Posted by: dekko | Jun 25, 2008 8:45:01 AM

  4. Dekko, who said that?

    We choose to boycott Heinz UNTIL the ad is added back to airplay.

    You choose not to, fine.

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 25, 2008 10:15:11 AM

  5. This is one of the tamest ads I've ever seen. The kiss lasts about three seconds, if that. It's charming. The uproar is proof positive that heterosexism is a living, breathing reality in these times.

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Jun 25, 2008 12:42:33 PM

  6. The bigger offense is that the British husband kissed an American. Yech. You know -- after the War in Iraq and all that.

    Heinz was probably going to end the campaign this week anyway. Now, they get consumers to petition to see their ads! Brilliant!

    Posted by: Marc in Chicago | Jun 25, 2008 1:41:16 PM

  7. I just signed the petition and when I did it said that the petition had reached 3500 signatures,

    Posted by: pekemo | Jun 25, 2008 2:25:40 PM

  8. Considering this was entirely a commercial transaction, I don't see the point of a petition. There is no public policy issue. You can boycott Heinz if you like, but the Ad I wouldn't get too excited over to see returned to TV.

    Posted by: anon | Jun 25, 2008 2:52:47 PM

  9. This is RIDICULOUS. Considering that the ad features the kids referring to the deli guy as "mum," I don't think the gays should be so self-congratulatory to think that this is a pro-gay ad. I can just as easily make the case that any ad that mines gay kissing as a JOKE is inherently anti-gay... I think it's time to simply thank Heinz for the attempt at including some man-on-man kissing in the public eye, allow them to go for their customers, and find bigger fights that are much more worth our time.

    It's KETCHUP, people.

    Posted by: GMB | Jun 25, 2008 3:27:31 PM

  10. America - home of the free-range prudes that want their ideas of what's obscene pushed on the rest of the world. (sigh)

    Posted by: | Jun 25, 2008 3:58:06 PM

  11. Loved it! Especially since they made "mum" a "Joisey guy". And while I'd like to agree that this is much ado about nothing, the problem is -- the hetero-nazis use little things like this to demean and demonize the gay community. "Take it off the air, Heinz, 'cause we is offended." So Heinz takes it off, sending out the message that, "Yes, it probably is offensive." Then when we gay people complain about Heinz agreeing with the hetero-nazis, we're told, "It's just ketchup, people." Meaning, "So what if we're sending out the message that what gay men do is offensive?"

    So this, bitch -- I'll buy the store brand ketchup from now on. It's cheaper and, after all, it is just ketchup.

    Posted by: Kyloe Michel Sullivan | Jun 25, 2008 4:24:08 PM

  12. ANON, it's just ketchup????????????

    Heinz Baby Food
    Heinz Baked Beanz
    Heinz Salad Cream
    Heinz Soup
    Heinz Spaghetti
    Heinz Tomato Ketchup

    That is just from the official website, so go back to sticking your head up yer ass eh?

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 25, 2008 8:50:12 PM

  13. Email rec'd today from Heinz.

    Dear Marc,

    Thank you for your recent comments regarding the Heinz Deli Mayo
    commercial which aired in the United Kingdom. Consumer feedback is very
    important to us, and we appreciate the opportunity to respond. Heinz
    pulled the ad in the UK because our consumer research showed that the ad
    failed in its attempt to be humorous, and offended people on all sides
    of the debate.
    Again, our sincere apology to anyone who felt offended by our actions.
    We appreciate that you have taken time to contact us to express your
    opinion on this issue.

    Julissa Quintanilla
    H.J. Heinz Company of Canada

    -----Original Message-----

    So, there you go.

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 25, 2008 8:54:16 PM

  14. It's a terrible ad. That's the reason it should be pulled.

    Posted by: Dale R | Jun 25, 2008 9:12:32 PM

  15. It's a terrible ad. That's the reason it should be pulled.

    Posted by: Dale R | Jun 25, 2008 9:13:32 PM

  16. you haven't got a clue.

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 25, 2008 11:29:13 PM

  17. you haven't got a clue.

    Posted by: Marc | Jun 25, 2008 11:29:42 PM

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