Friday, May 14, 2010 at 10:30 a.m.
"The pose does not display any body parts which would alone be considered obscene," writes Dispatch editor Brad Morton
, "but the naked condition of the model provokes outrage by some passers-by."
The only concrete example we have of "some passers-by" is the Dispatch's mention of a man complaining to city hall and the mall's management, neither of whom seem to be able to do much about it. But apparently a few years ago, customer grousing caused the corporate headquarters of Abercrombie & Fitch to order their Mission Viejo store to remove a racy ad from its windows--without sending the same order to other Orange County branches of the franchise.
A similar or identical ad at a Bath & Body Works in Oregon caused a similar or identical "controversy" less than a month ago, according to this article
cited by the Dispatch. The story in the Statesman Journal
features one excellent line:
"The woman is absolutely stark naked, and they must have photo-shopped her shaved areas because they would be visible otherwise. It definitely doesn't belong in a public area," said Perkins, who says she's not just a cranky old grandma who complains a lot.
You'd imagine this sort of thing would be a daily fact of life for Bath & Body Works' public relations department. But when we called their corporate owners
--who also run Victoria's Secret
--they declined to say how commonly they received complaints about ads featuring people, well, ready to bathe
"At Bath & Body Works, it is never our intention to offend a customer by the nature or content of our marketing," a spokesperson wrote in an e-mail. "We respect the opinions of others and consider customer feedback when determining the direction for future initiatives."