An advert for alcohol-free beer by brewer and pub company BrewDog has been banned after being found likely to cause serious and widespread offence.
The poster campaign, which launched in October across 44 sites, included the text “sober as a motherfu” next to the image of a beer can with the text “BrewDog”, “punk af” and “alcohol free IPA” written on it.
The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has said it received 26 complaints about the advert, arguing the phrasing could cause widespread offence and should not be in the view of children.
BrewDog defended the phrasing arguing that the advert had not been designed to cause offence and given it contained no profanity, it would not cause serious or widespread offence and was not inappropriate for display in a medium where it could be seen by children.
The ASA found that “motherfu” would be understood to be a trounced version of the expletive ‘motherfucker’, which was likely to offend a general audience and should not appear in media where it would be could be seen by children.