Monday, December 8, 2014

Advertising Standards Authority orders FNB to 'un-Steve' its misguided and stereotyping 'un-Steve' TV and radio commercials.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ordered First National Bank (FNB) to "un-Steve" and immediately stop its misguided and stereotyping "un-Steve" TV and radio commercials in which the bank used the name "Steve" to humiliate and denote people who are apparently not as good as the rest.

It's the second big advertising and marketing trash campaign from FNB getting flack from the public after 2013's "Can you Help" commercials which FNB first staunchly defended and then quietly and quickly removed.

After several complaints to FNB and the ASA, and several complaints from people named Steven and Stephen, FNB had the audacity to tell them in an "open letter" that "in the last few years the name Steve has come to represent a certain type of person".

Yet its something FNB neglect to say it grasped out of thin air and invented.

FNB stereotyped the name "Steve" calling them people with "blockages", "who need help" and who are "too afraid to switch and try new things" and who "struggle".

Complaintants said that FNB's distateful commercials was "insulting to any person named Steve as it portrays such people as idiots, boring and dull" and that it could lead to children with the name Steve being bullied.

FNB said that that it not the bank's problem and that it can't be blamed for bullying.

The ASA has now ruled that FNB must withdraw its "Steve" commercials.

"The potential harm in the current matter lies in the possibility that children could interpret the advertising to effectively condone ridiculing anybody named Steve merely because of their name," says the ASA.