LONDON – The Advertising Standards Authority has ruled that Crazy Frog has nothing to be ashamed of, after judging complaints that television ads for the animated ringtone character showed he was endowed with 'inappropriate and embarrassing' genitalia.
The advertising watchdog said that there were no reports of children being concerned by the ad and only adults had complained.
In addition, the ad had already been given an ex-kids restriction, meaning that it should not be shown around programmes made especially for children. This was because the ad contained a text number to make an order.
Some of the 60 complaints mentioned that the ad was annoying and was broadcast too frequently, but the ASA said it was for the advertiser and broadcaster to decide how often a particular ad is shown.
The ringtone has made around £10m for ringtone company Jamster thanks to its Swedish creator David Malmedahi, a 24-year-old computer components salesman from Gothenburg, and Erik Wernquist who designed the frog.
It was Daniel, who as a 17-year-old in 1997, sat down at his computer and recorded himself imitating his friends' mopeds, unaware that his recording would one day become the Crazy Frog and the most successful ringtone in the world, the company claims.
Ads for the mobile phone ringtone have played hundreds of times on TV channels and radio stations over the last few weeks. Now a dance mix has been recorded and played on Chris Moyles' Radio 1 breakfast show.
Jamster had already promised to censor the frog, even though the BACC cleared it with a certain rating, and has assured parents the altered ad is already being screened.
Robert Swift, UK marketing manager for Jamster, said: "We didn't expect people to be offended at all. It didn't even enter our heads that there might be a problem and it certainly wasn't intentional."
Jamster is part of the VeriSign family, a leading wireless content mediation company. The company develops, markets and distributes digital content and applications for the newest generation of GPRS, MMS and 3G mobile handsets.
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