Atheist Bus Campaign – Aussie Style

Most of you should have by now heard of the UK atheist bus campaign, which I discussed a few days ago. Well it looks like us Aussies are going to follow the POMs lead and run an atheist bus campaign of our own. The Atheist Foundation of Australia (AFA) has announced they are going to run a similar campaign here. The message on our busses is going to be:

“Atheism – Because there is no credible evidence”

At the moment they are only accepting pledges, if you are interested send an email to info@atheistfoundation.org.au with the subject of “Donation Pledge for Bus Ad Campaign”, and tell them how much you intend to pledge once they get the campaign underway. And if you are not already a member of the AFA why not join up as well.

Personally, I’m not a big fan of the wording, I actually think we should have gone for the exact same wording as the UK campaign. Sort of turn it into a world wide slogan, atheist/humanist/secular organisations all over the world displaying the same wording on their buses would have a huge impact in my opinion. But I’ll donate anyway, I hope you’ll join me.

update

Received an email from the AFA thanking me for my pledge and also informing me why they chose not to use the same wording as the UK campaign. It seems the AFA were worried the UK slogan might contravene advertising guidelines, particularly in South Australia (SA) and possibly other states. The following is copied from the email I received:

Here are the relevant regulations in an email from the advertising company.

——–

In this case the Clauses to be tested would pertain to any breaches to any religious guidelines. In SA the following clauses apply:

14.1 The Licensee must not display on a Vehicle and Advertisement that :-

(a) discriminates against or vilifies a person or section of the community on account of …, religion…;

(h) depicts …, religious or other subject matter which is contentious,…

——-

The risk here is, should the Minister deem any advertisement contravenes these guidelines, the Minister can ask for the advertisement to be removed within short time frames, at the cost of the client.

So you can put up adverts for religion, but not against it; typical.

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13 Comments

Filed under activism, atheism, atheist, Atheist Bus Campaign

13 responses to “Atheist Bus Campaign – Aussie Style

  1. I tend to agree that adopting a single world-wide message might be more powerful, but I like the basic point of this message despite the awkward wording.

  2. novparl

    Well, that’s the end of Christianity in Oz. But what about the Abo religions? Will you be running buses across the outback?

    “Religion makes people stupid.” George Monbiot, Pommie lite-green. So the Soviet Union was clever.

  3. How piss-weak is that? There is no evidence, let alone credible. Why the weasel word? We don’t have blasphemy laws that make this pandering required, do we? And if we do, how about they get tested?

    The UK banner has it’s problems … but it’s miles better than this.

    I think saying ‘there is no god’ is far better than ‘atheism’ – people tend to read into ‘atheist’ whatever they want, ‘there is no god’ is far less ambiguous to more people. Overall it is also a much more positive message too – ‘relax and enjoy your life’ is much better than ending on a negative, it just sounds like preaching, or ‘we don’t know what to think so we’re atheist’, which is a common view (and probably a common reason to be atheist for many).

  4. Vonnie

    The Australian campaign is being run by the Atheist Foundation of Australia, so I believe the use of the word “atheism” to be appropriate.

  5. nice of you to visit Vonnie, you are right, in this instance the use of the word “atheism” is appropriate. I just think that some people, including myself to some extent, think the campaign might get wider appeal if it wasn’t so blatantly atheistic. The SPA is considering a similar campaign and are battling with what slogan to use. Some of their members have indicated they will not be donating to the AFA campaign partly due to the wording of the advert.

    As I said at the start, it would be great if we could come up with some sort of slogan all the atheist/humanist/secularist/free thinker/bright organisations could agree upon. It’s a pity about the problems of the regulations, as per my update, as the UK slogan is quite non-specific but gets a message across.

  6. AV

    Michael:

    How piss-weak is that? There is no evidence, let alone credible. Why the weasel word?

    As a slogan it leaves a lot to be desired. But I suppose the Atheist Foundation of Australia reasoned that had they used “There is no evidence,” it would have opened them to the (admittedly piss-poor) objection that Scripture provides heaps of “evidence.” (Alternatively, there’s the “look at the trees” argument to contend with.) Hence the qualifier credible.

    novparl:

    Well, that’s the end of Christianity in Oz. But what about the Abo religions? Will you be running buses across the outback?

    Hehe. You used the word “Abo.” In the other thread you used the word “poofter” and made a poo joke. Lol. Do Mummy and Daddy know you’re up this late chatting on the interwebs with unbelievers? Don’t you have school in the morning?

    “Religion makes people stupid.” George Monbiot, Pommie lite-green. So the Soviet Union was clever.

    You have an incredible talent for utterances that are both tedious and irrelevant. You should take that show on the road.

  7. AV

    (h) depicts …, religious or other subject matter which is contentious,…

    This rules out any form of religious advertising, doesn’t it? Aren’t all religious contentious from the perspective of other religions?

  8. AV, haven’t you learnt to ignore novparl yet?
    I keep reading the comments, but until he makes a sensible statement, or reasonable question, I couldn’t be bothered replying (though I guess this is a reply?). Nice touché

    yes but the religious don’t tend to criticise each other much, they know damn well that if they complain about religion x doing something wrong the they will also have to stop doing the wrong thing. I believe that as much as some religions hate each other, they are in the long run all in bed together. the only common enemy is us atheists.

  9. AV

    AV, haven’t you learnt to ignore novparl yet?

    What can I say? I can’t resist his sophisticated humour nor his argumentative skills. I can’t wait for the next dick and bum joke.

    I keep reading the comments, but until he makes a sensible statement, or reasonable question, I couldn’t be bothered replying

    Probably a good policy. He’s just another Troll For Jesus (TM) anyway.

  10. esra star

    It is funny that a campaign for atheism can still be influenced by the fear of offending religion. There are no laws protecting anyone from the hatred, destruction and killing advocated by sacred texts.

    I would have liked: Atheism… no worries.

  11. welcome esra, I like your slogan.

    PS. you accidentally posted your comment twice, I deleted one, hope you don’t mind?

  12. AV

    Atheism . . . you know it makes sense.

  13. Pingback: Aussie Bus Campaign - an update « Oz Atheist’s Weblog

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