Doc. 10668

15 September 2005

The image of women in advertising

Motion for a recommendation

presented by Mrs Stănoiu and others

This motion has not been discussed in the Assembly and commits only the members who have signed it

1.       Some advertisements, at times disseminated on a massive scale, project demeaning, humiliating images of women.

2.       Women are portrayed as stereotypes of physical beauty, whose main purpose is to attract the consumer’s attention to a particular product, reducing them to the status of mere bait. The image conveyed by advertising strengthens these stereotypes and often even amounts to an attack on women’s dignity.

3.       Bombarded with shocking pictures of women in over-sexualised poses, European consumers feel increasingly powerless in the face of this phenomenon which is thrust on them and is beginning to spread to pictures of men. Various NGOs have denounced this state of affairs and demonstrated the link between this kind of advertising and violence against women.

4.       Freedom of expression and creation in advertising must not be allowed to undermine respect for human dignity.

5.       The Assembly deplores this phenomenon of advertising portraying scenes of exclusion and domination of women, as well as the use of naked bodies, particularly women’s bodies, to sell any product whatsoever.

6.       The Assembly accordingly asks the parliaments of the member states of the Council of Europe to pass laws on the subject in order to guarantee that advertisers’ freedom of expression does not impinge upon the right to human dignity.

7.       It further recommends to the Committee of Ministers to develop a European code of good conduct encouraging the advertising profession to present images that respect people’s dignity, be they men or women.

Signed (see overleaf)

Signed 1:

STĂNOIU, Rodica Mihaela, Romania, SOC

ANGYALOVÁ, Edita, Slovakia, SOC

BİLGEHAN, Gülsün, Turkey, SOC

BRANGER, Jean-Guy, France, EPP/CD

DALY, Brendan, Ireland, ALDE

DEBONO GRECH, Joseph, Malta, SOC

ERR, Lydie, Luxembourg, SOC

FRIMANNSDÓTTIR, Margrét, Iceland, SOC

GABURRO, Giuseppe, Italy, EPP/CD

GADZINOWSKI, Piotr, Poland, SOC

GAJDŮŠKOVÁ, Alena, Czech Republic, SOC

ILAŞCU, Ilie, Romania, NR

ÖZAL, İbrahim, Turkey, EPP/CD

STREB-HESSE, Rita, Germany, SOC

STULIGROSZ, Michał, Poland, EPP/CD

ZERNOVSKI, Andrej, "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia", ALDE


1        SOC: Socialist Group

      EPP/CD: Group of the European People’s Party

      ALDE: Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe

      EDG: European Democratic Group

      UEL: Group of the Unified European Left

      NR: not registered in a group