Archives: Regulatory – UK

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ASA Supports The Mother Of All Christmas Ads

During the 2012 Christmas season, ASDA and Morrisons ran ads depicting mothers running errands, bustling around kitchens, preparing food, wrapping presents and attending Christmas plays. Complaints were made to the ASA on the basis that they were offensive and sexist because they reinforced outdated stereotypes of men and women in the home. Morrisons responded to … Continue Reading

Regulator Knocks Gym’s Advertising Into Shape

 We all put pressure on ourselves to get in shape in the New Year and whilst we often need a little push to do so, gyms should be warned about trying too hard to sign up new members. The Vauxhall branch of Gym Limited sent an SMS message to customers in April 2012 stating that 30 April 2012 was … Continue Reading

CAP Sizes Up January Detox Advertising

After many of us would admit to consuming one too many mince pies over the Christmas break, the inevitable flurry of diet and weight-loss products has started to invade the advertising space and remind us that summer is not too far away. Each year (and in particular the first few months of each year) the … Continue Reading

Will It Be All White On The Night? – Toothpaste Companies Put To Proof Over Their Whitening Claims

Two toothpaste manufacturers have recently felt the bite of the ASA. Purity Laboratories Ltd claimed in a magazine advertisement that its products produced “whiter teeth in 1 minute” and attempted to substantiate this claim on its website by stating that ” a study conducted at Bristol University Dental School proved that Beverly Hills Formula toothpaste can … Continue Reading

‘Tis The Season…

With Christmas fast approaching and the party season now in full swing, it is no surprise to see that alcohol is featuring prominently in advertising. Advertisers need to ensure that they comply with the provisions of the Codes (Section 18 of the CAP Code for non-broadcast and Section 19 of the BCAP Code for broadcast … Continue Reading

UK Websites Are Failing To Comply With New Cookie Laws

The UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has received 169 complaints thus far about websites failing to comply with the cookie law that came into force on May 26. Operators of UK websites were given until that date to ensure that user consent for cookies is obtained prior to access to the website being granted, although … Continue Reading

Coming Soon: Bet Your Bottom Dollar Online?

Unlike in the United Kingdom, online gambling activities are not permitted in the United States. The regulator has historically held any online gambling activity to be illegal, until now. On December 23, 2011 the US Department of Justice reversed its decade long position on the applicability of the US Wire Act to online gambling that does not involve … Continue Reading

Association of National Advertisers Challenges ICANN Authority to Establish New Top Level Domains

Directly impacting the operations of European companies, the prospect of new TLDs being authorized by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is being challenged. Today, in a letter to Mr. Rod Beckstrom, ICANN President, the ANA (Association of National Advertisers), the U.S. based trade association that represents over 400 international brands, detailed major flaws … Continue Reading

Is The Beauty Industry Set For A Makeover?

Last year, Rimmel London was criticised for its “1-2-3 Looks Mascara” television and magazine ads when the Advertising Standards Authority deemed in its adjudication that the use of lash inserts on model Georgia Jagger exaggerated the effect achievable from the use of the product alone and the disclaimer “Shot with last inserts” was insufficiently clear … Continue Reading

Is the ASA Getting in Your Personal Space?

The wait is finally over… Hot on the heels of yesterday’s launch of product placement onto UK television, today marks another dawn of a new age in UK advertising. As of today, Tuesday 1st March 2011, the regulatory remit of the ASA is extended to cover online non-paid for space and pages under the control … Continue Reading

Super Bowl XLV: The Stakes Were High On and Off the Field

115 million viewers. $3 million for 30 seconds of airtime. $210 million total advertising spend. Forget the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers slugging it out for the Vince Lombardi trophy, the real game was being played in the Super Bowl’s commercial breaks. Super Bowl XLV, like its predecessors, produced some very well received … Continue Reading

Virgin in Champagne Bath Scandal

A Virgin Holidays poster advertising their “Travel Guru Services” was recently found by the ASA to be in breach of the CAP Code in relation to alcohol used in advertising. The ad depicts four rockstars in a jacuzzi full of champagne, with various bottles and glasses surrounding them and a female Virgin Holidays employee pouring … Continue Reading

Regulation Spreads to Advertisements on Corporate Websites and Social Networking Sites

The Advertising Standards Authority, ASA, announced on the 1st September 2010 an extension of its regulatory remit, from March 2011, which will give the Regulator jurisdiction over all marketing communications on the Internet including those on corporate websites and social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook, as well as over advergames and user generated content. … Continue Reading

STV: off scot-free? Ofcom investigates programme sponsorship by Scottish Govt

Ofcom recently investigated 57 programmes broadcast on STV in 2008 and 2009, all of which were sponsored either by the Scottish Government or its agencies. This followed allegations in the press that the Scottish Government had influenced the content of STV’s programming. 39 of the programmes in question (including the 12 Homecoming programmes, about which the press … Continue Reading

DMA’s new industry code requires Parental Consent

Companies directly marketing to customers must not use the Internet to gather data about children. That’s according to a new code of practice published by the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), which says companies must seek parental consent for children under 12 years old, The Register reports. The code must be adhered to by members of … Continue Reading

Sugar and Spice and All Things Nice: Advertising to Children

The new coalition government has stated that one of its priorities is the protection of children from excessive commercialisation. This policy aim reflects a general perception in the UK among the governing and chattering classes that advertising is at the root of both this problem and the problem of obesity among children. Eyes are therefore turned to the … Continue Reading

Government passes the buck to industry to deal with obesity crisis

The new Health Secretary under the coalition government, Andrew Lansley, has recently announced the axing of the previous government’s £75 million advertising campaign to promote healthy living, which was introduced in an attempt to reduce the record levels of obesity in the UK. As Mark Sweney from the Guardian notes, the new administration is instead encouraging … Continue Reading

Happy Days? Making Health Claims in Advertisements

Several ASA adjudications in recent months have highlighted the difficulties for advertisers in making any health claims about their products. The ASA have come down hard on those that fall foul of the CAP and BCAP Codes which require that, in relation specifically to health claims, advertisers must have evidentiary substantiation of any health claims made in advertisements, by … Continue Reading

Sorry Starbucks, the ASA agrees with Costa

In the battle of the coffee chains, Costa has edged one step ahead of its biggest rival, Starbucks. The ASA has dismissed complaints from Starbucks over a series of press and outdoor ads run by Costa stating that coffee lovers preferred Costa to Starbucks. The ads, featuring body copy such as “Sorry Starbucks: the people … Continue Reading

Pro-Christianity Ad Receives Most Complaints in 2009

The ASA, in conjunction with the Code-writing body CAP, has today published its Annual Review for 2009. The Review includes a list of ads which received the most complaints in 2009. Topping the list was an ad from the Christian party, which ran with the strapline “There definitely is a God” on London buses. The … Continue Reading

UK Regulators

In addition to the Advertising Standards Authority, there are many other UK regulators relevant to the advertising and marketing industry.  Here, you will find links to most important bodies. Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) The ASA is the UK’s independent regulator of advertising across all media, including TV, internet, sales promotions and direct marketing. The Committee of … Continue Reading
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