NSW consent ad pulled after actor's 'grubby' TikTok videos emerge

·News Reporter
·3-min read

The NSW government has pulled one of its latest sexual consent ads after the male actor's TikTok content raised concerns.

The TV commercial aimed to promote the new affirmative consent laws that came into effect on June 1, but Attorney-General Mark Speakman was forced to remove one ad just days after launching the campaign.

Radio 2GB host Ben Fordham first raised the issue after a concerned father wrote in alerting him of "grubby" social media videos belonging to actor Paul Sterrantino.

"Take one look at his social media — this bloke is promoting some extremely questionable content that flies in the face of respect for women," the listener wrote, according to the radio station.

TikTok screengrabs from young actor asking girls inappropriate questions
The actor who appeared in one of the campaign ads has come under fire for the questionable content on his TikTok page. Source: 2GB/TikTok

Mr Sterrantino's TikTok page is filled with videos showing him approaching young women in public and asking them "graphic" questions, Mr Fordham said.

Mr Fordham said while the girls knew they were being filmed, "it’s pretty clear some of them are affected by alcohol".

Playing some of the clips on air, Mr Sterrantino can be heard asking women: "What’s something you don’t want your mum knowing?"

Some videos show the man asking young women about crude sex acts, it's been reported.

One woman reveals she had slept with three people at the same time before Mr Sterrantino presses her for details, the Daily Mail reported. The video posts in question appear to have been removed from Mr Sterrantino's TikTok account.

Huge backlash: 'Not ok'

Mr Fordham said some clips are too graphic to be played on-air and he described the TikTok content as "revolting".

"One day if you have a daughter you may understand why this matters," he said, addressing Mr Sterrantino.

"Asking young girls grubby questions and posting it all over the internet is not ok. It stays there forever," he said.

According to 2GB, the father who wrote in was only made aware of the situation when his daughter saw the TV commercial and was triggered by it because of an interaction she had with the actor.

She supposedly identified him as Paul Sterrantino, which Mr Speakman later confirmed.

Mr Speakman confirmed with Yahoo News Australia that the campaign featuring Mr Sterrantino has been removed.

"After being alerted by Ben Fordham to the offensive TikTok posts [on Thursday night], made after filming of our Make No doubt campaign, I immediately requested that the Department of Communities and Justice remove the video and related images from its digital and social media platforms, as the TikTok account was in the same name and appears to belong to someone physically resembling the actor," he said in a statement.

"I appreciated Mr Fordham’s positive feedback about the campaign and his swift action to help ensure the integrity of this important community education campaign.

"I can confirm that police and social media checks were completed by the Department prior to filming."

It's believed Mr Sterrantino appeared in one of the many TV commercials, and that is the only one that's been removed.

Screengrab from NSW government consent ad
Paul Sterrantino appeared in one of the state government's content ads, which has since been pulled. Source: NSW Government

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