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Universal’s Sing Your Heart Out compilation does not encourage dangerous driving

By | Published on Wednesday 23 November 2016

Sing Your Heart Out 2016

Universal Music has been cleared of promoting dangerous driving by the Advertising Standards Authority.

In a ruling published this morning, the ASA confirmed that it had received one complaint about the TV advert for Universal-released compilation ‘Sing Your Heart Out 2016’; a classic mix of super tracks I’m sure we all own. The ad shows various people singing along to songs from the CD in their cars. However, the complaint noted, “three drivers were shown to lift their hands from the steering wheel and two drivers were shown to glance at other passengers while driving”.

Actually, I think the most shocking thing about the ad is that people are shown really enjoying Shawn Mendes, but dangerous driving is no joke, and the folks in the 30 second clip really do look like they’re losing themselves in the music.

Which sounds very dangerous indeed. And no one wants ‘Stitches’ to be the last thing they hear before they die in a nasty car crash. But worry not, because those people are not getting distracted by their singing along, oh no. They’re utterly focussed and totally in control, as the advert’s maker Clearcast will tell you.

In its response to the complaint, Clearcast said that it was the passengers, not the drivers, who were really throwing themselves around, and any time a driver glanced at passengers their car was stationary. And if anyone removed their hands form the wheel it was “a tap or a hand clearly placed downwards to the gear stick”.

“Any head movements shown by the drivers were minor and all drivers kept their eyes on the road with limited neck movement which showed that they were looking ahead at all times when the car was moving”, says the ASA. Wow, you’re really sucking the joy out of this compilation now.

The advert was not “actively seeking to entice the driver to act irresponsibly” and there was “no direct call to action for viewers to consider it as driving music”.

Sure, some people enjoyed some songs in a car. Who hasn’t? But they could equally have been listening to the songs at home. Listening to them at home with extreme care and thought for the safety of those around them and in other nearby homes.