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The atheist bus ads in Italy were promising but they’re not going up anytime soon.

IGPDecaux, an agency which sells advertising space on behalf of Genoa’s municipal transport company decided not to run the ads, the Union of Atheists, Rationalists and Agnostics (UAAR), said.

The adds bearing the slogan: ‘The bad news is that God doesn’t exist. The good news is that you don’t need him to,’ were to be posted on the back of public buses serving the port city, beginning on February 4.

It was not immediately clear why IGPDecaux decided not to run the ads.

If it wasn’t clear then, it’s a bit more clear now.

Apparently, the Italian atheists violated The Code of Advertising Practice (roughly translated below).

Article 10 — moral, civil, religious and human dignity

Advertising must not offend the moral, civic and religious citizens. It must respect human dignity in all its forms and expressions.

Article 46 — Appeals to the public

It is subject to the rules of this Code any message aimed at raising awareness on issues of social interest, including specific or calling directly or indirectly, the contribution of voluntary contributions of any kind, aimed at achieving social objectives.

These messages must include the identity of the author and recipient of the request, as well as the social objective to be achieved.

The promoters of such messages can freely express their views on the subject matter, but it must be clear that these are views of the same promoters and not facts.

I’m not sure how condemning non-believers to Hell “respects human dignity” either, so at least there’s an argument against religious ads, too.

If anyone can translate, the comments section here may have some interesting pieces of information.

(via Atheism Examiner)