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Paddy Power's Oscar Pistorius ad sparks 12 complaints to ASA within hours

Paddy Power’s controversial Oscar Pistorius ‘money back if he walks’ betting campaign prompted 12 complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority within hours of going live. The ASA confirmed to The Drum that the complaints about the ad being offensive were logged onto their system overnight. The ‘It’s Oscar Time’ ad features a mock-up of double-amputee Pistorius as an Oscar award statue, with the promise to customers: ‘Money Back if He Walks’. A blog post from Paddy Power introducing the betting offer said: “Global media attention, bar-stool conversation and pillow talk will shift from the Oscars on Sunday night to Oscar on Monday when the Blade Runner straps on his prosthetic limbs for the long walk to the high court. “Paddy Power is joining the debate by offering customers an opportunity to put their money where their mouth is – on the outcome of the murder trial.” The ad has been condemned by campaigners. Holly Dustin, director of End Violence Against Women said the campaign was “sick” and contributed to a culture where violence against women was trivialised. The Drum was awaiting a response from Paddy Power at time of publication.

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