Two ads (one Instagram and one website) promoted a drinking card game.
a. A paid-for ad on Instagram, for a drinking card game, seen on 4 November 2022 stated, UK's most irresponsible drinking game Spice up your pre-drinks,
parties, stag dos and hen dos with an easy to play but brutally exciting drinking game. Warning: This game is NOT for snowflakes and showed an image of a full beer glass with a face on the side which had crosses for eyes and a sloping mouth.
b. Ad (a) linked to a website which featured the beer glass with the face and stated HANGOVER GUARANTEED. DRUNKH is a no fuss, no bullshit drinking game. We've taken away confusing rules, because who understands those when you're
pissed? Draw a card, do what it says. Brutal drinking game for parties, stag dos and hen dos. Get DRUNK with DRUNKH!
A complainant challenged whether ad (a) was irresponsible and the ASA challenged whether ad (b) was irresponsible
encouraged excessive drinking;
portrayed drinking alcohol as a challenge, encouraged irresponsible and anti-social behaviour and linked alcohol with daring behaviour; and
suggested that alcohol was a key component to the success of a social event.
The complainant also challenged whether ad (a) was inappropriately targeted at people under 18 years of age. Response
DrunkH Ltd said they were new to the market and were not aware of the rules. They said they had ended all paid-for advertising for the game.
ASA Assessment: Complaint upheld:
CAP Code stated that marketing communications must be socially responsible and must contain nothing that was likely to lead people to adopt styles of drinking that were unwise. It also stated that marketing communications which included a promotion must
not imply, condone or encourage excessive consumption of alcohol.
We considered that the image of the beer glass with a face suggested someone who was inebriated, and the references to the UK's most irresponsible drinking game and
The drinking game you'll never remember in ad (a) and the claims hangover guaranteed, when you're pissed and Get DRUNK in ad (b) condoned and encouraged excessive drinking and were therefore irresponsible and breached the Code.
noted that the advertised game encouraged participants to drink alcohol and complete dares and considered lines such as UK's most irresponsible drinking game, brutally exciting drinking game, Warning: This game is NOT for snowflakes, Brutal drinking
game, Not for the SNOWFLAKES, Not for the faint of heart and showing the dare cards portrayed drinking alcohol as a challenge. Furthermore, we considered that the ads encouraged people to behave in irresponsible and daring ways when drinking alcohol.
We considered that readers would understand the claim Spice up your pre-drinks, parties, stag dos and hen dos to mean that playing the drinking game was a significant factor in the success of those events or similar social events.
Furthermore, we considered that the claims For the pre-drinkers, for the party goers, Not for the SNOWFLAKES to mean that drinking alcohol as part of the game was an integral part of the events. We therefore considered that the ad (a) implied that
alcohol was a key component of the success of social events.
We understood that the ad had been served to people aged between 16 and 32 years and understood that it had not been directed only to people aged over 18. We concluded
the advertisers had not taken sufficient care to ensure that the ad was not directed at people under 18 years and it therefore the ad breached the Code.
The ads must not appear again in the form complained of. We told DrunkH Ltd
to ensure their future ads contained nothing that was likely to lead people to adopt styles of drinking that were unwise, encourage irresponsible or anti-social behaviour, portray drinking alcohol as a challenge or suggest that alcohol was a key
component of the success of a social event. We also told them to ensure that ads referring to alcoholic drinks were not directed at people under 18 years of age.