The craft beer brewer's 'Don’t Make Us Do This... Equity for Punks’ funding ad (shown above) includes a short skit of founders Watt and Martin Bookie, among other things, posing in drag as red light district ladies of the night, looking to earn money to fuel the brand's expansion.
The scenes however came under fire with nearly 8,000 people signing a petition claiming it featured “offensive caricatures of people, many of whom already suffer discrimination every day [such as] homeless people, trans women and sex workers”.
It urged: “Sign now to tell BrewDog that they should pull their #DontMakeUsDoThis video, apologise, and give donations to relevant charities.”
Several individuals commenting on the petition claimed they would cease their involvement in the ‘Equity for Punks’ scheme if an apology was not forthcoming.
Watt issued a statement to The Drum which read: “The video we created was to launch the CrowdCube aspect of Equity for Punks and was made in the spirit of fun and sending ourselves up – it’s a shame that some people have taken offence where none was intended.
“We have a history of supporting and championing the LGBT community, and will continue doing so… watch this space.”
Watt’s statement, while not an admission of wrongdoing, still trumps his infamous “formal apology” to the Portman Group “for not giving a shit” about its decision to ban an ad for its Dead Pony Club which reportedly encouraged anti-social behaviour and binge drinking.
The brand has a history of campaigning for LGBT rights. Most notably, it clashed with Russia over its “gay propaganda” laws in 2014 during the Sochi Winter Olympics with the launch of the limited edition #notforgays ‘Hello My Name is Vladimir’ beer.