A Dutch bicycle maker’s ad was pulled from French TV, Forbes reports, because government apologists don’t want to butthurt car makers by reminding people that automobiles are filthy, inefficient planet-killers.
VanMoof, the Dutch company that made the ad touting its newest e-bike, shows unflattering, albeit honest, images of smokestacks, pollution and wall-to-wall traffic superimposed on the reflection of a car during the 30-second spot.
It was apparently too much unvarnished truth for the Autorité de Régulation Professionnelle de la Publicité (ARPP), the French authority that pulled the ad, saying VanMoof brought “discredit [to] the automobile sector.”
“It’s puzzling that car companies are allowed to gloss over their environmental problems, but when someone challenges that situation, it gets censored,” VanMoof Co-founder Ties Carlier told Forbes.
VanMoof won’t budge.
“We refuse to make a watered-down version [of the ad] that would meet ARPP recommendations for the French automotive industry,” Alfa-Claude Djalo, VanMoof communications manager said.
The ad has previously run, without censorship, in Germany and in The Netherlands, Forbes said.