If your subway rides are mostly spent staring at your phone while crafting the perfect rage tweet about how the F train was 20 minutes late, you'll be forgiven for missing a new subway ad for BOOBS. Or, more specifically, ads for breast augmentations, starring BOOBS. Apparently, people have been complaining about the cleavage-sporting signage, and now Albany's jumped into the fray, urging the MTA to review its advertising standards and hide all lady parts from public view.
The ad, which features a faceless deep cleavage-bearing woman, hocks $3,800 breast augmentations that are "Made in New York," (locally sourced!) and can be found spreading its fairly degrading message on about 1,000 subway cars and in 50 subway stations citywide. According to the Daily News, the signs have been making straphangers a little uneasy. "It’s too much,” Judith Calderon, a mother of a 2-year-old, told the tabloid. “It’s inappropriate for kids. People need to think about the kids." The Daily News also reported that comments from passing children included, "Dad, what does augmentation mean?" and "Why would anyone want them bigger?" so it looks like those Time Warner parental controls are doing a solid job blocking out the E! channel.
It appears the folks up in Albany got wind of the ads, spurring Cuomo aide Howard Glaser to fire off a strongly worded letter to MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast on the governor's behalf.
In response to a query from our office, the MTA advised that such ads fall within the MTA's written standards for advertising. With all due respect, we suggest those standards need to be revisited...Tens of thousands of children ride the subway every day to get to school...The public has a right to expect that the MTA will strive for a family-friendly environment.
MTA spokesman Adam Lisberg says the agency will heed the governor's request. "The MTA understands the concerns that Governor Cuomo and other parents have raised about this advertisement and about maintaining a family-friendly environment on our trains and buses," he told us in a statement. "We will revisit our standards for advertisements and our process for reviewing them."
The agency's ad standards have been an issue over the past few years, particularly after a 2011 subway ad campaign speared by "political activist" Pamela Geller that referred to Muslims as "savages"; as of yesterday, however, the MTA maintained they had received no complaints about the breast augmentation ads. Subway advertising is never not annoying.