It: Chapter Two Adverts Appear In Kid-Friendly Playlist On Spotify
Adverts for 2019 supernatural horror It: Chapter Two were played during a Spotify playlist of children’s lullabies.
The movie’s distribution company Warner Bros. came under fire last August for the placement of these adverts, after listeners of the Classic Lullabies playlist heard Pennywise the clown (voiced and acted by Bill Skarsgård) saying, “For 27 years, I dreamt of you. I craved you. Oh, I missed you…” between songs. The ad also contained drums, and the sound of laughing clowns *shudders*.
Now, the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) has ruled today – March 11 – that, “We considered those elements meant the ad was likely to cause distress to young children, and that it should have been appropriately targeted to avoid the risk of them hearing it.”
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Also in the ruling, it is stated that, “The ad was heard by the complainant between songs on the Classical Lullabies playlist. Given the name of the playlist – which included the songs Children’s Music No.1: I. Lullaby, 5 English Nursery Tunes and For Children Vol. 1 – we considered that the playlist was designed primarily to be played to and therefore likely to be heard by young children.”
Warner Bros.’ response was that the advert “might have been perceived as mildly scary, but it avoided violence, offensive language, gore and elements of the film which might have been considered overly scary”, and that it was aimed at 18 – 44 year olds.
Spotify also added that “they did not believe the playlist was designed primarily for children”, and that there is a filter for the ad to not play on kids’ playlists.
The final action from the ASA simply reads: “We told Warner Bros. Entertainment UK Ltd to ensure that future ads that were unsuitable for children did not appear in media which was designed primarily for children.”
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