Category Archives: sport

Fury-ous about Belfast-bound SPOTY

The BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year awards are heading to Belfast’s SSE Arena on the 20th December. But there is public outcry about one of the twelve shortlisted candidates.

Of course the title of the show includes the word personality, but is merely based on the individuals up for the top awards sporting prowess during the year and has little to do with the actual personability and personality of the individual concerned. Therefore on sporting prowess Tyson Fury who recently won the World Heavyweight boxing title.

However, last month, and not for the first time, he made homophobic remarks. In an interview with The Mail on Sunday he said:

“There are only three things that need to be accomplished before the Devil comes home. One of them is homosexuality being legal in countries, one of them is abortion and the other is paedophilia. So who would have thought in the 50s and early 60s that those first two would be legalised.”

Earlier in 2012 he had tweeted “dont like gays should all b shot dead.”

But it is not just the LGBT community that are up in arms with Fury although there are only three women on the short list he has made misogynistic comments about one of their number, Jessica Ennis-Hill. When asked about her he said:

“That’s the runner, isn’t it? She’s good, she’s won quite a few medals, she slaps up good as well. When she’s got a dress on she looks quite fit.”

Three years ago when Jess was last nominated a fellow nominee was fboxer and Olympic gold medalist Nicola Adams. But when asked about female boxers Fury added:

“I’m all for it. I’m not sexist. I believe a woman’s best place is in the kitchen and on her back. That’s my personal belief. Making me a good cup of tea, that’s what I believe.”

Fury’s comments are so outmoded that he doesn’t deserve to be considered a personality in the 21st Century. In the same year that Jose Morinhio allegedly made sexist comments about his team’s doctor the last thing the BBC should do is honour a homophobic, misogynist boxer whose views offend many sports people, fans and members of the public.

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Paddy Power lose their leg to stand on as advert pulled

Remember the defense used by Paddy Power about why they wished to continue showing the Transphobic advert for Cheltenham:

Several members of the UK transgender community are cast in the ad, and it was also cleared by Clearcast [which pre-vets TV ads] before airing. This ad is simply a bit of mild-mannered fun in the runup to the Cheltenham festival.

Well Clearcast have now issued the following statement:

Last week we approved a tv ad for Paddy Power featuring references to transgendered people. When making our decision to approve the ad, we took into account the fact that the advertiser had sought a view from the Beaumont Society (a body run by and for those who cross dress or are transsexual) which did not find the script idea offensive.

However following a number of complaints over the last few days, it appears that the ad has caused offence and in consultation with broadcasters, it has been decided that the ad should no longer run on their TV or VoD services in its current format. We regret offence that may have been caused.

So where does Paddy Power stand now? Well they have issued the following statement:

Paddy Power’s Ladies Day commercial has been pulled from TV.

The decision to suspend the clip wasn’t made by us – it was done by the British TV advertising regulator along with television broadcasters.

This is especially frustrating given the commercial was already pre-approved by British television advertising clearance body Clearcast, just one week ago, who then considered the humour in the advert, while not to everyone’s taste, fell short of causing offence.

The Beaumont Society said there was “nothing untoward with the advert concept” and felt it was not inappropriate since “the entire campaign would be a tongue-in-cheek look at the Ladies Day race meeting where these days a large number of cross dresser’s make a day of it”.

Furthermore, Paddy Power cast members of the trans-community in the various transgender roles in the commercial.

Given the attention and diligence we demonstrated throughout the development of this commercial, we are very disappointed by today’s decision.

So Paddy Power are frustrated and disappointed that they can no longer show this ad, that the decision on decency wasn’t made by them but by bodies outside their control.

Having one group, and one that many in the transgender community are sceptical of, agree with your point of view may not reflect the other groups dealing with Transgender issues who have disagreed with your stance, that much is clear. Paddy Power unlike Clearcast have not shown any remorse for the offence they have caused to others, but rather go on to boast about the number of YouTube views they have received of the ad.

The ad has been removed for the screens though no doubt will still be available of Paddy Power’s YouTube channel. Hopefully in future advertisers will think how to positively include transgender people in their adverts.

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ESPN Pull Plug on Paddy Power’s Transphobic Ad

Broadcasters are taking mixed approach to Paddy Power’s Transphobic ad, which is currently under referral by the Advertising Standard Authority.

Here is the current state of play.

ESPN have pulled the ad saying:

“We’ve reviewed the commercial in question, and have made an internal editorial decision that it will not run on ESPN.”

Channel 4 home of terrestrial racing coverage in the UK will run it they say that while they as a channel have a duty to make sure that all ads meet the advertising code, they will:

 “leave it up to our viewers to make their own judgment about the adverts they have seen”.

This from the channel that showed the issues of transgender individuals in My Transexual Summer in recent months!

BSkyB will also continue to show it, they have said:

 “Prior to transmission all advertising is checked by Clearcast, an independent body dedicated to applying the ASA rules and regulations on advertising. If, retrospectively, any ad is thought unsuitable for broadcast, the ASA can step in. When they do so, we always comply with the judgments they make.”

Clearcast clearance was also the excuse that Paddy Power gave in their statement on this issue:

“Several members of the UK transgender community are cast in the ad, and it was also cleared by Clearcast [which pre-vets TV ads] before airing. This ad is simply a bit of mild-mannered fun in the runup to the Cheltenham festival.”

I wonder how many members of the Clearcast clearance panel have ever heard a transgender woman talk to them one on one about the fears that they have of being publicly outed in the way that the advert wants to call a game to liven up Cheltenham Ladies Day? How many of them have seen the fear and trembling of a transgender women talking about an instance where someone has been threatening toward her when they guessed or discovered their birth identity.

Well done to ESPN on coming to their own conclusion on seeing the public reaction to this advert and shame on BSkyB and Channel 4 for not realising that the public have already spoken.

Update both BSkyB and Channel 4 subsequently reversed their decision and along with Clearcast decided to not screen the ad any further. This led to the total withdrawal of the ad on Thursday.

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