Although the FCC did not ask for edits of a Dove soap campaign targeting older women, the ad agency that produced the ads said concern over how the FCC might react did influence the process.
For weeks, Dove has billed the spots--which are featured at its Web site --with the tag line: "Watch what we couldn't show you on TV." The advertisements featured tasteful nudes in side views with strategically placed hands and arms.Some folks in Washington got excited after a story appeared on the Website of Promo magazine quoting Ogilvy & Mather Chicago executive Maureen Shirreff as she suggested the agency had submitted the spots to the FCC, and that the commission had asked for edits to the campaign . "The Federal Communications Commission would not allow Dove to run its latest television commercials because they feature "implied nudity" of women over 50," the Promo story reported. A section, attributed to Shirreff, said "She added that O&M and Dove felt that it would be impossible for the spots to be edited, as was suggested by the FCC, to pass federal muster."According to a spokeswoman for Shirreff, the FCC had nothing to do with the process. Instead, Shirreff had been talking about the broadcast networks to whom the spots had been initially submitted. They are the ones who said the spots would not pass muster, though they were "very nice and supportive of the campaign." The spokeswoman said the agency was working with the magazine to correct the story.