Save as PDF
Email Friend

The 10 most unpopular adverts of all time are revealed

Home | Blog | The 10 most unpopular adverts of all time are revealed

The ASA has revealed the top ten most complained about/ most annoying adverts of all time and the top prize goes to an advert made by Kentucky Fried Chicken.

KFC’s call centre advert received many complaints from parents who felt the call centre workers encouraged bad manners (as they sing with their mouths full).As the ASA celebrates its 50th birthday they decided to release their 10 most controversial adverts. The watchdog has dealt with roughly 431,000 complaints in half a century.

The top ten most complained about are:

1. Yum Restaurants (UK) Ltd (KFC) (2005) 1,671 complaints/ complaints were not upheld

Encouraged bad manners after call centre workers sang with their mouths full.

2. Auction World Ltd (2004) Television Shopping Channel 1,360 complaints/ the tv channels licence was revoked

Misleading prices and claims. The shopping channel became well known for poor customer service and delays in delivery.

3. Paddy Power plc (2010) 1,313 complaints/ not upheld

Cat being kicked across a pitch by a blind football player. Complaints about the ad encouraging animal cruelty and being offensive to blind people.

4. The Christian Party (2009) 1,204 complaints/ not upheld

Strap line was offensive to atheists 'There definitely is a God. So join the Christian Party and enjoy your life'.

5. British Safety Council (1995) 1,192 complaints/ upheld

Offensive to Roman Catholics. Raising awareness for National Condon Week, leaflets were distributed featuring the Pope wearing a hard hat with the strap line "The Eleventh Commandment: Thou shalt always wear a condom".

6. Marie Stopes International (2010) 1,088 complaints/not upheld

Complaints about the promotion of abortion. The TV ad advertised sexual and reproductive healthcare advice, information and services.

7. Volkswagen Group Ltd (2008) 1,070 complaints/ part upheld

Complaints over the level of violence. The ad portrayed an engineer who was struggling against multiple versions of himself.

8. Yves St Laurent Beaute Ltd (2000) 948 complaints/ upheld

Complaints that the poster ad was sexually evocative and caused offensive. Opium perfume poster featured a naked Sophie Dahl.

9. Department of Energy and Climate Change (2010) 939 complaints/ part upheld

Misleading and scaremongering. TV and press campaign about climate change, exaggerating the likelihood and impact of extreme weather conditions.

10.Barnardo's (2008) 840 complaints/ not upheld

Complaints that it caused widespread upset, broadcast at times when children would be watching. Aimed at raising awareness of domestic child abuse. Featured repeated scenes of violence and drug taking.

TK Maxx

Giant Shopping lands in Glasgow

TK Maxx
Kommando have created an experiential campaign for TK Maxx to launch their latest flagship superstore.

Drama And Surprise

TV Channel Launch causes drama and surprise

Drama And Surprise
To launch their new TV channel, TNT placed a large red push button on a quiet square in a Belgium town. Next to the button was an invitation: "Push to add drama."

Adverts that irritate you...

Irritating Ads

Adverts that irritate you...
After blogging about the ASA’s top ten most complained about adverts we couldn’t resist posting a few TV adverts which we have found annoying over the years! Looking at research they also appear to have got on a few other spectators nerves!