Nokia has found itself in a whole new world of pain this morning, with the news that its latest marketing push for the ill-fated handheld games machine-cum phone, the N-Gage, has been banned outright by the Advertising Standards Agency.
The move follows 12 complaints regarding the firmís fly-poster, press and cinema adverts from members of the public, with the common issue seeming to be that the materials used are too violent and were both "offensive and depressing." Which seems a little pathetic to us.
One of the adverts that prompted complaints contains the phrase, "This is where I took on three guys Ė and made them cry like babies." The ASA deemed that the ad "could be interpreted as a depiction of bullying" and therefore "likely to cause offence and distress."
Nokia defended its campaign, insisting that the wording used is entirely standard for a videogames machine, possibly threatening the directors of the ASA with some kind of reprisal via the magic of Bluetooth, though this could not be confirmed at time of press.
The good news for Nokia is that it can now compete on a level playing field with every other player in the games sector. Almost every publisher and hardware manufacturer has had an advert banned by the ASA after complaints from Britainís extremely sensitive chattering classes. What kind of democracy inhibits free speech after 12 complaints when over 56,000,000 donít see enough of a problem to bother calling or emailing?