Clear: Prohibition of sexist and racist outdoor advertising in Stockholm


The issue of sex-discriminating advertising in outdoor milieus has been rediscovered for several years. Today, Thursday, the Traffic Council decided in Stockholm to implement ethical guidelines for outdoor advertising. The decision concerns advertisements in the outdoor environment of the city's land and will be tested on attempts with digital advertising vouchers and information boards.

The guidelines that Stockholm's city will incorporate into the agreements will be the same as the industry's self-regulatory body – the Advertising Ombudsman – but with an addition to racist advertising. The guidelines will be signed into the agreements with the outdoor companies that Stockholm City has agreements with, including Clear Channel and JCDecaux.

If the Traffic Office considers that the message violates the guidelines, the message must be deleted within 24 hours.

Daniel Helldén (MP) is convinced that the matter will be clubed at the next meeting of the City Council, and that the ruling majority in Stockholm City Hall with the Social Democrats and the Party of the Environment has been driving in getting the regulation and traffic council council The agreements will be completed and will begin in 2018.

– We are responsible for a number of outdoor areas we provide for advertising and also see the responsibility that the city's inhabitants are not exposed to advertising messages they perceive as offensive or offensive. We have chosen to include industry guidelines in the agreements with the advertising companies, but with an addition to racist advertising messages. As a politician, I feel that we have extra responsibility for the residents to feel safe and not subject to offensive behavior or information. Especially in the light of the debate that has been the last few weeks, in connection with #metoo, he says to Resumé.

Has #metoo in any way made you speed up the process of making a decision on the matter? [19659007] – No, it is not. This is a discussion that has been taking place for several years and now we have reached a settlement where we decided to follow the best of following the industry's own guidelines. Clearly, however, #metoo shows a need to get a regulation.

In future, the outdoor companies will comply with RO's guidelines contained in the agreement with the City of Stockholm, with an addition to racial advertising. The assessment of whether the advertising message is sexistic or racist is then made by the Traffic Office. The advertisers are then given 24 hours to withdraw the message. What sanctions any breach of contract would have if the outdoor companies did not comply with the traffic agency's request is not yet clear.

Sveriges Advertiser's CEO Anders Ericson has previously criticized a ban on restricting freedom of expression. What do you say about that argument?
– No, there is no preview of the message, and is that companies comply with industry guidelines.

Are there other areas surrounding advertising messages where you discuss the introduction of regulations or prohibitions?
– No, not today.

Can there not be boundary issues when the Traffic Office is to assess sexitarian and racist advertising or not?
– In all assessment cases, there must be an assessment then it will be clear that questions about boundaries and discussion around individual decisions made by the Traffic Office. However, in the next step, a practice will be worked out for advertising companies.

Sveriges Advertiser's CEO Anders Ericson has previously criticized the ban, considering that the regulation would limit freedom of expression.

– Sweden is probably countries with least sex-discriminatory advertising in the world. It's enough to visit our neighbors to see significantly more. It is dangerous to go around and be fought with such short-term populism. Ultimately, it is about freedom of expression, Anders Ericson said in an interview with DN earlier this year.

Sweden's Advertisers stated in their reply that the draft ethical guidelines were widely held and gave room for a broad interpretation, which places great demands upon them as shall comply with the regulations. It was also stressed that there is already an institutional system with extensive practices for the investigation of gender discrimination

In Sweden, it is the industry's self-regulatory and non-stop agency, the Advertising Ombudsman (RO), who controls the ICC's International Chamber of Commerce) rules for gender discrimination are followed. They have further developed the above article and examine gender-discriminatory advertising based on three criteria.

first Advertising that produces women or men as pure sexual objects and which can be regarded as offensive (objective advertising).
2nd Advertising that shows a stereotype image of gender roles, thus producing women or men in a degrading way (standardizing advertising).
3rd Advertising that in any other degrading manner is clearly gender-discriminatory for women or men.

Advertising that precedes racist messages must be counteracted and issues related to this goal should be brought within the framework of dialogue with the industry.

In the decision base of the Traffic Board, urban politicians are going to have ongoing dialogue with the industry and its associations to counteract recruitment that violates the guidelines.

The Traffic Office will evaluate work in 2018.

CORRECTION: In a first version of the text, the Summary Wrong Wrongly Wrote the Guidelines for Public Transport in Stockholm. The guidelines apply to outdoor advertising on the city of Stockholm. In a first step, the rules will be tested on digital advertising vouchers and information boards.

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