An update from a short while ago (irishtimes.com - Last Updated: Thursday, February 23, 2012, 16:51):
A controversial advertisement for Irish bookmakers Paddy Power, aired last weekend on Sky Sports television, has been pulled by British authorities following complaints.
The 31-second ad which featured members of the transgender community had been pre-approved by British advertising watchdog Clearcast but in a reversal today the body decided to shelve it.
In a statement released today, Clearcast said in making its original decision to approve the ad it had sought a view from the Beaumont Society - a body run by and for those who cross dress or are transsexual – and they did not find the script idea offensive.
The statement added following a number of complaints over the last few days “it appears the ad has caused offence and in consultation with broadcasters, it has been decided that the ad should no longer run”.
“We regret offence that may have been caused,” Clearcast added.
The ad in question promised to make ladies day at the Cheltenham horse racing festival “even more exciting” by adding some “beautiful transgendered ladies” to a crowd of race-goers. Viewers were then asked to “spot the stallions from the mares”.
Groups representing members of the transgender community had called for it to be pulled on the basis of it featuring “deeply transphobic content”.
Paddy Power spokesman Ken Robertson described the decision by Clearcast and broadcasters as “frustrating” given that the commercial was already pre-approved.
Mr Robertson said Paddy Power had reached out to the transgender community for feedback in making the ad and had cast members of the community in the commercial.
He said: “The Beaumont Society stated there was ‘nothing untoward with the advert concept’ and felt it was not inappropriate since ‘the entire campaign would be a tongue-in-cheek look at the Ladies Day’s at race meeting where these day’s a large number of cross dresser’s make a day of it’”.
“Given the attention and diligence we demonstrated throughout the development of this commercial, we are very disappointed by today’s decision,” he added.
The ad was only aired on British television.