The UK’s Adertising Standards Authority has been asked to rule on a campaign by an atheist group featuring signs that read, “There’s probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life.” (Note: the action part of the message works just as well if you replace “no” with “a”.) The campaign from the British Humanist Association has been challenged by a group called Christian Voice on the grounds it breaks rules concerning substantiation and truthfulness.
The ASA’s code states “marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove all claims”. The regulator said it would assess the complaint and decide whether to contact the advertiser.
Stephen Green, national director of Christian Voice, said: “There is plenty of evidence for God, from people’s personal experience, to the complexity, interdependence, beauty and design of the natural world. But there is scant evidence on the other side, so I think the advertisers are really going to struggle to show their claim is not an exaggeration or inaccurate, as the ASA code puts it.”
Hanne Stinson, chief executive of the British Humanist Association, said: “I am sure that Stephen Green really does think there is a great deal of evidence for a God (though presumably only the one that he believes in), but I pity the ASA if they are going to be expected to rule on the probability of God’s existence.”
Once it hands down this ruling I want the ASA to get to the bottom of the whole Mac or Windows thing.