Australia Clears Red M&M of Bullying Charges

Aussies let candy off hook after prolonged ethics probe
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 9, 2011 2:30 AM CDT
Updated Aug 9, 2011 2:42 AM CDT

After what could be history's most prolonged ethics investigation of a piece of candy, advertising authorities in Australia have decided that the red M&M is not a bully. The ad bureau—after a 2-month investigation—rejected complaints from viewers that the M&M's behavior in TV ads set an unacceptable example for children, AdWeek reports.

Ads in which the red M&M berates M&Ms of other colors are "humorous rather than bullying," the bureau proclaimed. Marketers shouldn't have send a message to children "showing them that the red M&M can dominate the rest of the group," one critic said. "Children will see this as a normal way of life as the M&Ms portray to them those they mix with at school." Click to see which other candy ad Aussies objected to. (Read more M&Ms stories.)

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