Xbox 360 TV commercial banned by ASAWatchdog said it 'glamorised' street car racing

04 April 2007

A TV commercial for the Xbox 360 games console broke advertising rules by glamorising street car racing, said the industry watchdog.

It showed a car weaving through traffic during a chase scene in a busy city.

The Advertising Standards Authority said the commercial broke rules relating to health and safety and driving standards and ordered it not to be shown again.

'We concluded that the ad glamorised street car racing and could be seen to condone dangerous driving,' the industry watchdog said.

During the advert, text appeared at the bottom of the TV screen saying: 'Dramatisation. Professional stunt. Do not attempt.'

During the chase scene it changed to: 'Professional drivers. Closed course.' And at the end, the text added: 'Jump in. Xbox 360.'

Real or fantasy

The ASA said the text reinforced the sense that events in the advert were real rather than fantasy, and so were capable of being copied.

The commercial had been given a post-9pm restriction to keep it away from younger viewers.

Responding to the investigation on behalf of Microsoft, which makes the Xbox 360, advertising agency McCann Erickson said the advert didn't show cars exceeding speed limits and the on-screen text explained all stunts were performed by professionals.

Xbox is 'committed to responsible console gaming' and would not intentionally show irresponsible behaviour in an advert, the response said.

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