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Australian Ad Company ADSHEL Reinstates HIV Prevention Ads After International Social Media Uproar


Following a Facebook campaign that quickly gained almost 60,000 followers (there were just 4,000 at the time of my posting yesterday), Australian ad company ADSHEL reinstated a tame HIV-prevention ad which featured two men embracing with a condom, and said it would replace them on bus shelters in Brisbane where they had been taken down.

Protest ABC Australia reports:

In a statement issued this afternoon, Adshel said many of the complaints were part of an ACL campaign, and that it has reinstated the ads.

"It has now become clear Adshel has been the target of a coordinated ACL campaign," Adshel chief executive Steve McCarthy said. "This has led us to review our decision to remove the campaign, and we will therefore reinstate the campaign with immediate effect."

Earlier today the ACL said the issue with the ads was about condoms, not homosexuality. "I've been labelled homophobic. This has absolutely nothing to do with gay couples," spokeswoman Wendy Francis said."This has nothing to do with anything other than another condom ad in a bus shelter, where the children are catching buses to school and billboards where their parents are stopping at lights. I will continue to fight sexual imagery in our outdoor advertising until we can get it removed."

Watch a protest that was held yesterday at ADSHEL's offices in Brisbane, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Yeah Wendy, we'd believe you if you hadn't once stated that allowing same-sex marriage would be the same as legalising child abuse.

    Posted by: Travis | Jun 1, 2011 8:35:43 AM

  2. If this couple has been together for 6 and a half years, why do they need condoms? Assuming they are both healthy and faithful to each other, they shouldn’t need them.

    It actually is quite offensive for any gay men’s health group to make the assumption that same-sex activity between men is automatically risky and thus requires protection. I also find it homophobic. It’s a form of gay-on-gay prejudice that is funded by governments and enabled by bureaucratic-minded gay twits in AIDS councils who want to prove how important they are.

    I suppose that, with Australia being the backwater that it is, that you wouldn’t expect much from the GLBT community in general. They’re at least 20 years behind Great Britain and the USA.

    Posted by: adam | Jun 1, 2011 9:13:41 AM

  3. Uh, OK, so it makes a difference on whether or not to remove this ad campaign if the complaint came from an anti-gay Christianist group vs. "individual members of the public"? So what happens next if the latter start complaining? Great way to try and worm your way out of the stupid situation in which you allowed yourself to be placed. Why don't you act like adults and stand-up for what's right? Get some backbone for God's sake. Jeez!

    Posted by: Rob | Jun 1, 2011 9:21:03 AM

  4. @Adam I have been trying to decide which is the stupidest of your utterly ridiculous statements but I've finally given up and decided to celebrate them all equally as the moronic drivel of a champion troll. Well done sir. Keep on trucking.

    Posted by: Hoydenista | Jun 1, 2011 9:53:25 AM

  5. Wendy Francis and the Australian Christian Lobby are-- surprise, surprise-- a pack of lying liars, who apparently believe that the Ten Commandments were pro-lying, rather than against it.

    So she's claiming she's not homophobic, and this was just about condoms? Gosh, golly, gee, then what a coinky-dink that the ACL has been constantly vocal against gay rights (they've also gotten called out on anti-Muslim comments).

    The ACL is essentially just the American Family Association with a shrimp on the barbie.

    Posted by: bobbyjoe | Jun 1, 2011 10:01:50 AM

  6. Right, you know, like how the ACL is fighting to remove ALL adult product ads from places where impressionable children can see them: Tobacco ads, alcohol ads, men's and women's hygiene product ads, lingerie ads, R-rated movie ads, ads for bars and clubs...Huh? What? Oh, they're not? Well, I'm sure they'll get right on it, right? ...Right?

    Posted by: luminum | Jun 1, 2011 10:43:49 AM

  7. @adam... you make me laugh... to continue your comment though... I must add...

    ...and the USA is 20 years behind Canada (re: LGBT)

    Posted by: NorthoftheBorder | Jun 1, 2011 11:40:48 AM

  8. Bravo for people power!

    Posted by: Lewis Payton | Jun 1, 2011 12:51:13 PM

  9. "It has now become clear Adshel has been the target of a coordinated ACL campaign"

    Does it matter? Can't the people at ADSHEL think for themselves? This is a very tame ad. They should be offering cash back to their clients (over and above the lost time) as a way of apologizing for the degradation and insult of having their posters removed.

    Posted by: Randy | Jun 1, 2011 2:38:02 PM

  10. Adam ladies & gentlemen is one of those "humans" that only give all others a bad name.Thinking he can speak on behalf of an entire country when there are issues in every walk of life in every part of the world.What a nasty,viscous,vile,uneducated,self absorbed,pitiful,sorry waste of space.
    And i am being kind.Hopefully you have not troden on Australian soil & spread your vermon.

    Posted by: John | Jun 1, 2011 2:44:44 PM

  11. Adam aka Jason aka thousands of troll names, should be ignored from this point forward and hopefully it doesn't crawl onto these websites and spam with his garbage.

    As for the ads being reinstated, that's obviously a good thing, but this should have never been a controversy and the fact it is does not speak well to ADSHEL. The Christianist bigots are doing exactly what is to be expected from them.

    Posted by: Francis | Jun 1, 2011 3:15:06 PM

  12. They are against the add because if shows a gay couple embracing not because of the condom which is barely visible!

    Posted by: jaragon | Jun 1, 2011 6:11:56 PM

  13. KUDOS to Treasurer Andrew Fraser for calling Wendy Francis' playgroup's action exactly what it was: homophobic.
    Dear Wendy, YOU are the real cause of harm to the health and wellbeing of children. This is a community health issue, honey. A condom can also save christian lives.

    Posted by: CHRISTOPHER | Jun 1, 2011 8:01:59 PM

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