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ASA: Mecca Bingo Ad Featuring 'Baga Chipz' Ruled Unacceptable

ASA Mecca Bingo Ad Featuring Baga Chipz Ruled Unacceptable

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) recently declared a Mecca Bingo ad as ‘irresponsible’ and barred it from reappearing. The ad, posted on Instagram by the British bingo operator, was found to imply that gambling could enhance one’s self-image or self-esteem, violating the Committees of Advertising Practice (CAP) Code.

Controversy and Context

The ad featured RuPaul’s Drag Race UK star, Baga Chipz, in ‘before’ and ‘after’ images, suggesting a transformation before and after playing Mecca Bingo. While Mecca Bingo argued that the ad portrayed the transformations commonly seen in drag entertainment, the ASA concluded it suggested gambling could improve personal qualities.

ASA’s Verdict and Resolution

The ASA ruled the ad as irresponsible, emphasizing that it conveyed the message that gambling could enhance self-image or self-esteem, regardless of the context understood by some viewers. Consequently, the ASA prohibited the ad from appearing in its criticized form and engaged with Mecca Bingo to prevent similar issues in future campaigns.

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