Magnum has copped backlash for an ad that seemingly compares the “guilty pleasure” of eating their products to gay people being jailed.
The ad, which appeared on Spotify in the UK, features a voiceover from a man who can’t hug his partner for fear of prison time.
He tells listeners: “A hug for my boyfriend. That’s my guilty pleasure.
“Because in my country, just a simple hug with the man I love could send me to prison for more than 10 years.”
Supportive, socially responsible message or tacky, tone deaf comparison?
Some listeners who heard the ad shared their thoughts online.
“Just heard an ad that (in short) was a guy saying ‘My guilty pleasure is a kiss. I like kissing men. Kissing men can send me to prison for 14 years in my country. Pleasure should never be guilty. Like Magnum ice cream’ NOPE. NOT THE SAME MY DUDES,” one person tweeted.
Another wrote, “There are at least 3 versions of the magnum ice cream ad that does a bit about being gay would get me X years in prison followed by a get a magnum. Pleasure should be guilty. That’s fucked.”
“A Magnum advert just came on saying about how this man could get arrested for hugging his boyfriend in his country then started advertising their ice cream,” one person wrote.
“Using real world problems to advertise your fucking ice cream??”
Magnum defends the Spotify ad
A Magnum spokesperson said they “want to remind people that what is considered a guilty pleasure isn’t always what you would expect.”
The International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) says seven UN member states impose the death penalty for homosexual activity.
Seventy other UN member states criminalize same-sex relations between two consenting adults, ILGA. In 26 countries of those countries, penalties vary from 10 years prison to life sentences.
An ad for #Magnum ice cream bars just popped up on my #Spotify and it is the cringiest/funniest gay baiting ad ever. A foreign accented man laments how dangerous it is to hug his boyfriend in his country, but he won’t get arrested for eating a Magnum! pic.twitter.com/S6WdzW9p51
— Christa Blackmon (@TheOdalisque) August 2, 2019
What the hell?!? There are at least 3 versions of the magnum ice cream ad that does a bit about being gay would get me X years in prison followed by a get a magnum, pleasure should be guilty. That’s fucked. pic.twitter.com/T0j6Hbxl4g
— Tia (@Tatty_is_ALIVE) August 4, 2019
uhh a magnum advert just came on saying about how this man could get arrested for hugging his boyfriend in his country then started advertising their ice cream ?? using real world problems to advertise your fucking ice cream ??
— # ???????????? ?? ?? (@ggx828) August 2, 2019
@MagnumIceCream your advert comparing the potential to be killed if you’re gay to the guilty pleasure of eating a magnum is disgusting, racist and homophobic. Please withdraw it immediately.
— nell blane (@firegoat67) August 5, 2019
I know most of y'all probs have Spotify premium so don't hear the ads, but really unsure about the Magnum ad that's talking about homosexuality being a "guilty pleasure" in countries where homosexuality is illegal, like thanks for the awareness but also like not okay
— Kyle Flynn-Davies (@kflynndavies) August 2, 2019
Magnum ad previously draws complaints in Australia
In 2017, Magnum aired an ad in Australia showing a lesbian couple sharing an ice-cream at their wedding.
The ad rankled at least one homophobe who complained because, he said, it promoted “lesbianism during family time”.
The complainant told the Ad Standards Board: “I know this [complaint] will not be taken seriously as ramming this down our throats now happens daily.”
But the board later dismissed the complaint, saying depicting the couple didn’t breach ad rules.
For the latest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) news in Australia, visit qnews.com.au. Check out our latest magazines or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.