Updated July 27, 2018 05:33:33 A controversial button on shirts marketed to bored people has been removed from Australian retailers.
Key points:An online retailer removed the button from its websiteThe company is investigating how to remove the buttonThe Australian Consumer Affairs Council has been asked to investigate the buttonAfter more than a month of criticism, the button was removed from all retail outlets, including some major chains.
But a spokeswoman for the Australian Consumer Action Network (ACAN), which works on consumer protection issues, said the company had no choice but to remove it.
“We have made inquiries with the Australian retailer to see how they can remove the offending buttons,” she said.
“The company has advised us that they are in the process of conducting a formal review of the button and will remove it from their website as soon as possible.”
In an emailed statement to The Australian, a spokesman for ASX listed several options for the retailer to remove buttons: “For the time being we are removing the button that appears on all our shirts from the current version of the website.”
But in a statement to ABC News on Wednesday, the retailer said the button had been removed as part of an investigation into “improper content and misleading advertising”.
“We apologise for any inconvenience caused to our customers, and are committed to removing this button from all of our stores as soon a process is put in place to remove this problematic content,” the spokesman said.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has been invited to investigate how to ensure that buttons are removed from retail stores, and if the issue is being handled by the Australian Government.
The ACTC’s head of consumer affairs, Caroline Anderson, said retailers should be given more time to implement measures to remove advertising that was misleading.
“It’s really important that retailers are being given more of a time frame, in this case, four weeks, so they can get through this, because otherwise the consumers are not aware of what is going on,” she told the ABC.
“If you can see there is a button, then you should be able to remove that, because that’s the way the internet works.”
Ms Anderson said consumers should be reassured that all Australian retailers had implemented measures to address inappropriate advertising.
“That’s something we have got to look at,” she added.
Ms Anderson says consumers should not expect any quick fixes on this issue.
“There is no quick fix,” she explained.
“People will continue to see these things on their shirts for a while.”
And then the next time they see that button on their shirt, they are going to say, ‘That’s not right, that’s not the way I want to look’.
“Topics:consumer-protection,consumer-law,toys,toy-manufacturing,tobacco,alcohol,alcohol-education,alcoholism,behaviour,health,alcoholics-and-diseases-and/or-dependence,tattoos,sport,australiaContact Ashley DysonMore stories from New South Wales