A pre-roll ad on YouTube for rapper Bamby H2O's single, titled Over It , seen on 16 December 2020, featured an instrumental played over scenes of a powdery substance being cut with a razor, a rolled up cigarette being lit and a rolled up bank note
being used to consume a powdery substance. The opening lyrics stated Fucked up over you and Drugged up at the function slurring all my words!. One scene included the outline of a woman pulling down her top to reveal her breasts. The ad
included lyrics such as Shawty wanna fuck with me she gotta feed me first, Double D's I'm drowning in disbelief and You chase a bitch and repeated references to the consumption of drugs throughout.
The ad was
seen before a synth wave music playlist.
A complainant challenged whether the ad was offensive and irresponsible because it featured references to drug use and paraphernalia, nudity and explicit language.
Bamby H2O did not respond to the ASA's enquiries.
ASA Assessment: Complaint upheld
The ASA was concerned by Bamby H2O's lack of response and apparent disregard for the Code, which was a breach of CAP Code. We reminded them of their responsibility to
provide a substantive response to our enquiries and told them to do so in future.
The ad was for a full-length rap music video and was seen before an unrelated music playlist on YouTube. It featured a number of scenes depicting
the consumption of illegal drugs, including a bottle of amphetamine tablets and a powder consumed through a rolled up bank note. We considered that the ad, which featured illegal drugs and drug-use was irresponsible for depicting the use of drugs in this
context. The lyrics also referenced being drugged up and featured expletives such as the word fucking which was likely to seriously offend many people. The ad also featured the outline of a woman exposing her breasts which we considered was gratuitous
and objectified women.
While the video was shot using visual effects, its content was graphic and explicit. Furthermore, we considered that viewers of an unrelated music playlist would not expect to be served an ad that featured
drug references, nudity and strong language. We concluded that the ad was irresponsible and likely to cause serious and widespread offence and therefore breached the Code.
The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told
Bamby H2O to ensure that their ads did not cause serious or widespread offence, and to ensure their ads were not socially irresponsible.