Sony may sue over Change4Life ad

Monday, 9th March 2009 19:43 GMT By Patrick Garratt


According to this MCV piece, Sony is considering suing over the use of a PlayStation controller in the “early death” Change4Life ad.

From the piece:

A source close to Sony revealed to MCV that the agency behind the ad, The Gate, had not contacted the platform holder to ask about using a controller that bears a close likeness to PlayStation’s pad.

The ad, part of a government campaign to get kids to be more active, showed a child sat on a sofa holding what looks to be a DualShock beside the words, “Risk an early death. Just do nothing”.



  1. Johnny Cullen

    I’m curious Pat, whats your view on this, considering MCV came out on this?

    #1 6 years ago
  2. SplatteredHouse

    I was shocked when I first saw the ad. One of those ‘you have got to be kidding me!’ moments. That’s at the least a dead ringer for a PS pad (and I was fairly sure it was a dualshock, or similar, at the time).
    I hope Sony give them hell, in light of this agency’s incompetence and negligence in attaining the necessary permissions. You can be sure Microsoft would also have kicked up a right stink, if one of their pads was used in a national piece of media suggesting that the usage of one leads directly to a shortening of life expectancy. I think it’s a horribly inappropriate ad, and I hope that this is held up as a taboo, and not something that you can get away with doing; especially in light of the progressions and expansions in appeal and broadening focus of gaming, into health and fitness, and genuine educational, as well as more social family avenues that have been made, along with efforts made to address concerns of the broader audience – cooperation for the Byron Report as an example.

    A lot of past held stereotypes are increasingly outdated, and there doesn’t need to be lazy public-facing advertising reinforcing a luddite view of this hobby.

    #2 6 years ago
  3. No_PUDding

    Indeed, agree with the last part.

    #3 6 years ago
  4. Yoshi

    I really hope sony sues them becos you could obviously see it was a playstation control and it makes the playstation look like thats the only 1 which could have that effect

    #4 6 years ago
  5. Psychotext

    What is that controller anyway? It’s apparently wireless but it’s not a sixaxis or a ds3.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. Cort

    It’s a third party controller, but obviously connected with PlayStation. Definitely not Sony – find the image and look at the bulge where the cable or mini-USB port should be, and the raised d-pad.

    #6 6 years ago
  7. JonFE

    If it’s not Sony’s controller, they can’t do much about it. Sony may shout until they’re blue in the face, but it will do them more harm than good. After all it *is* an ad that promotes a healthier way of life than the one many kids around the “civilized” world are accustomed to. As for why using a controller that looks like a PS one, well, I guess, Sony has only its own success to blame there…

    I’ve seen similar ads in my country both on TV and in print. The printed one had a chocolate croissant with some kind of sweets as the thumb sticks, dark chocolate pieces forming the D-pad and coloured smarties as face buttons – in x360′s colour scheme (green, red, blue, yellow) if you wonder.

    #7 6 years ago
  8. Blerk

    They should forget about the lawsuit and just launch their own ad-campaign to promote kids gaming. With taglines like “At least you know they’re not out doing drugs” or “If they’re into games, they’re not likely to be getting their girlfriend pregnant. Because they’re not likely to have a girlfriend.”.

    #8 6 years ago
  9. Patrick Garratt

    Yep. They could try, “You know we get really, really defensive every time anyone says gaming’s addictive, causes desensitization to violence or can bring on child obesity? That’s because we honestly believe extensive videogaming is a wholesome activity that improves your physical and mental well being. There’s nothing bad about it an any way. Videogaming is better for children than sport.”

    That should get the message across.

    #9 6 years ago
  10. JonFE

    I guess you two *DO* have a point there :D

    #10 6 years ago
  11. Psychotext

    I really love that idea Blerk. The adverts basically write themselves.

    #11 6 years ago

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