Controversial sunburn competition cancelled

by Alister POOLE on October 6, 2011

A travel competition that bears slogan ‘earn while you burn’ was axed today after being branded as ‘irresponsible’ by ASA, the Advertising Standards Authority.

Travel comparison site Deal Checker sent out promotional emails in July, offering free holidays for the two best sunburn pictures showing the most extreme cases of white and red bits. What the company insists was intended to be taken as a light-hearted way of making people think about one of tourism’s most serious issues has been condemned the ASA, which says that the competition will be seen to promote sunburn.

Dealchecker is adamant that the idea was meant to promote sun safety, as there was focus on holidaymakers using old photos instead of new. DMC Digital, its parent company, told the ASA how it doesn’t want people to ever risk their skin solely for the purpose of making an entry into the competition. According to the firm, it was made clear that only old photos of sunburn were wanted.

Dealchecker’s managing director, Mr Mark Attwell, told the press that the company’s intention was to make sure awareness was raised of the great dangers of sunburn while promoting responsible behaviour and also the use of sunscreen. It was accpeted that some might have misunderstood Dealchecker’s motivation for its competition and an apology was also made.

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