Nov 19, 2009 at 02:48 PM
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Broadcaster Turns Blind Eye, Saves Davidoff Sponsorship!

The Independent Complaints Authority for Radio and Television (ICA) has rejected a complaint against the Davidoff Swiss Indoors tennis tournament by an anti-smoking group claiming that the tournament had violated a ban on tobacco ads airing on Swiss radio and television, which was first implemented in 1964. reports "the ICA rejected both complaints, judging that reporters only ever referred to the "Swiss Indoors" and that television cameras never focused on the company's name.

Davidoff has sponsored the tournament since 1994, which features visible advertising as well as on court branding behind both baselines.

Perhaps, Davidoff isn't doing a good enough job with their on-court signage. As an experiment try watching the Swiss Indoors clip below, but ignore the Davidoff sign in the backdrop on every point.

"As long as broadcasters ignore your obvious sponsor presence, you're in the clear" seems to be the message sent from the ICA.

It's doubtful that this will set a satisfying precedent for similarly proposed alcohol sponsorship bans throughout the World.