Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Christian Grey Fever?

 I realize I’m starting a little bit of a trend lately with “dirty” advertising, but I couldn’t help but snap a shot of this advertisement while riding The Tube this past weekend in London. Naughty Dating Site? Really?!

My first thought was that this was awfully suggestive and inappropriate for such a public area in which many kids are present. However, after thinking about it a little more, I realized that there actually are people out there that may benefit from this site. Some people may be looking for another “naughty” person like themselves, simply a sexual companion, or perhaps, someone who enjoys the BDSM activities.

So, should an ad like this be allowed to be displayed publicly? Yes, it’s awfully suggestive and inappropriate, but it could be of a real service and aid to some people in society. Isn’t that our job in the media, to serve and provide products for all audiences? So is this crossing the line or just another service that is our duty to provide? 


  1. I think whether or not it is "appropriate" to run an ad of this sort depends on the environment. I think here this sort of openness is so nonchalant that no one, kids included, think anything of it. After all, kids learn about all these naughty things someday anyway, right? And kids have the habit of asking questions that can't be avoided, so why try to prolong it? I vaguely recall stumbling upon the condom section of the grocery story by the pharmacy while I was with my mom and loudly asking what those were for. Sex is everywhere. There's no getting around it.

    That being said, in the United States I feel this ad would just foster even more discomfort around sex. Society needs to be open to the idea of fostering a healthy discourse around sex and the US is just not there yet. The funny thing is we do have sites like this. Think about Craigslist for a minute here. There's a whole section of people just looking to hook up, but it's all done in secret like a crime of some sort. If we treat sex like it's criminal, of course this ad would be inappropriate.

    As for whether we should provide this service, I personally don't plan on helping people find fellow people to hook up with in most scenarios, so I don't think the media has to "provide" this service per se. They should inform the public of relevant information, though, and in the British society sex is treated like any other facet of life and so this site IS relevant. It really just depends on where you go.

  2. This to me is an example of how taboo Americans see sex.

    It isn't talked about or shown nearly as much in the States and we tend to think of it as "dirty" when it is.

    These sites defiantly do exist in America, but they are seen as so out of the ordinary, they are not broadcasted out in public media; if you were into that sort of thing, you would probably see the ads in your magazines and websites.

    I can see this ad making waves in American Media, but here I just think they don't care enough.

  3. I don't think that this is really inappropriate or (too) suggestive. The content of the ad is relevant to the company being advertised, in this case a dating site. I'm not really sure what other kind of ad would be expected from a website called "benaughty.com." I think it's appropriate for the purpose of what is being advertised, and like Cody and Kristen said in the previous comments, it's probably not as big of a deal here given the differences in attitudes toward sex.

    However, I would find it inappropriate if this ad was just as suggestive for a different product (that did not have anything to do with sex) with the sole purpose of using sex to sell their product. That's a cheap advertising tool, no matter how "effective" it is in getting products sold.

  4. I don't see this as particularly "naughty." Yet there is a sentiment around the games that Londoners are "sexually repressed people." Its really more of a joke than anything else. I think this ad is playing up to that ironic reputation Brits have. It is frank. It is candid. To the point, so thought about being offensive. I like that. Here is a great article- not particularly related- that talks about this "sexual repression" a bit in the opening paragraph. Bill Simmons is an incredibly funny sports journalist. Worth the read for sure. http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8213663/handball-handball-handball