Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland release latest Complaints Bulletin

13 advertisements found to be in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Brand Ambassadors, Comparison and Principles

 

The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland’s (ASAI) independent Complaints Committee has released its latest Complaints Bulletin which contains 16 case reports on complaints recently investigated by the ASAI.

13 of the 16 advertisements were found to have been in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Brand Ambassadors, Comparison and Principles. The advertisements complained of related to Television, Social Media, Internet, and Press advertising. The ASAI Complaints Committee chose not to uphold one intra industry / interested party complaint.

The Complaints Committee is a completely independent arm of the ASAI and is responsible for considering and dealing with complaints submitted by the public, by a member of the ASAI, by a Government Department or any other person or body of persons. The Committee is made up of a range of experts from the advertising, media, education, consumer and marketing sectors. See further details here – http://www.asai.ie/about-us/complaints-committee.

Commenting on the latest ASAI rulings, Orla Twomey, Chief Executive of the ASAI, stated: 

The latest complaints bulletin from the ASAI illustrates our ability to handle complaints across a large number of mediums. This is the first time a complaint about an influencer / blogger has been upheld by the Complaints Committee. Over the past few years, we have spent considerable time highlighting awareness in relation to advertising best practice within this space to ensure all relevant parties are equipped with the knowledge and resources to correctly identify commercial marketing content across their platforms. 

Last year, we also introduced guidance on the ‘Recognisability of Marketing Communications’ aimed at ensuring Irish consumers are not misled by influencer marketing through online advertisements on blogs and social media websites.  

The ASAI is committed to protecting consumers in relation to advertising – across all mediums – and our approach is to work with all advertisers, rather than against them, to ultimately ensure that all marketing communications are legal, truthful, decent and honest. 

The ASAI also provide a free and confidential copy advice service to advertisers, agencies and media members to help them create responsible ads. If an advertiser has any concerns about a marketing communications’ compliance with the ASAI’s Code, they can contact us and avail of the free and confidential copy advice service.”

Below is a list of complaints which have been found to be in breach of the ASAI Code:

 

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
 

Kia Motors Ireland

Dangerous Behaviour The complainant considered the advertisement to be extremely disturbing and dangerous. The ad depicted a fully clothed man jumping off the cliff to which the complainant argued the ad suggested suicide. Kia argued that the hero in the drama had a wish list of things he wished to achieve and chose to do this by way of a road trip through Europe.

In breach of section 3.24(a) of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/motoring-22/

Poundland Limited (Dealz Ireland) Decency and Propriety The complaint considered the imagery used to be sexualising children’s toys. Dealz argued that they do not like to take themselves too seriously and look to bring moments of fun and laughter to their customers when they can. Dealz said their campaign was intended for adult consumption on the basis that it would not be understood by children.

In breach of section 3.3 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/online-retailer/

Positive Life Misleading The complainant considered that an event advertised on Facebook was pseudoscience, promising to disclose the secret to replacing food with breathing exercise. Also, he considered that it was targeting vulnerable groups, such as those with eating disorders. Positive Life stated that the event was an evening to hear a person’s life experience and they were not encouraging anyone to take the practice on.

In breach of section 3.3, 3.24(a), 4.1, 4.4 and 11.1 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/health-beauty-21/

Coty (Rimmel IRL) and Rosie Connolly Misleading The complainant considered the advertising to be misleading. Rosie Connolly’s face had been filtered and photoshopped to an extent to which the complainant argued that people may purchase the Rimmel Foundation she was advertising and think they would achieve the same results. Ms. Connolly said that Rimmel had approved the images which she had forwarded to them, therefore, the complaint should be addressed to them. Rimmel IRL said the post was not intended to mislead and they had removed it because it did not represent their values as a brand.

In breach of section 4.1, 4.4 and 4.9 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/health-and-beauty-12/

Vue Cinemas Misleading The complainant had viewed the offer and purchased the tickets for a Monday screening but was charged more than the advertised rate of €4.99. As the point of sale was “Every Ticket, Every Monday” for the said price, the complainant considered that it was misleading. Vue Cinemas did not believe their advertising was in breach of the code.

In breach of section 4.1 and 4.4 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/leisure-cinema/

Eir Misleading The complainant reviewed the Eir TV coverage map for the Dublin area and noted that his home was within the area identified as having Eir TV services available. When he contacted Eir they informed the complainant that the service was not currently available in their area, He therefore considered the coverage map to be misleading. Eir acknowledged and apologised that their coverage map had not been updated regularly enough over the past couple of months.

In breach of section 4.1 and 4.9 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/telecommunications-64/

Prasada Centre Misleading Three complaints were issued to the ASAI about this advertisement. Complaint one challenged the claim that the centre had been ‘gifted’ to the people of Nenagh. Prasada Centre said the term was a play on words. Complaint two challenged the claim that “Homeopathy is a natural and safe alternative to conventional medicine and is suitable for both adults and young children. Remedies used are from natural substances”. Complaint three challenged the claim that “A psychic is someone with extra sensory perception (ESP for short). He or she is able to ‘read’ or sense things most of us are unable to pick up on”. Prasada Centre used the Cambridge Dictionary to define the word ‘psychic’.

In breach of sections 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, and 4.10 of the code.

Complaint one: Not Upheld

Complaint two: Upheld

Complaint three: Not Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/alternative-therapies/

Musgrave – Centra Misleading The complainant argued that the chicken breast packet on the advertisement leaflet had five pieces in it for half price. However, when they got to the shop, a staff member informed them that it was three chicken breast pieces that were half price and the advertisement is wrong. Centra explained they had made an error when signing off the artwork for the product. It should have featured three chicken breasts rather than five.

In breach of sections 4.1 and 4.9 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/food-beverages-11/

Conns Cameras Misleading The complainant considered a special offer to be misleading. The advertiser stated the promotion in question was one of a number of “instant discount” offers that ran across different brands in 2017.

In breach of section 5.5 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/camera-2/

 

Nestle (Ireland) LTD Misleading The complainant considered a tweet by the advertiser to be misleading. Nestle deleted the tweet after someone complained via twitter.

In breach of sections 4.1, 5.5 and 5.1(e) of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/food-beverages-12/

Boylesports Gambling The complainant said that he was concerned the advertisement was affording those who saw the advertisement the opportunity to place a bet on the actions of a child. The advertisers said that having reviewed the complaint they carried out a number of actions. Following an extensive internal review of their promotions and images, they felt they had comprehensive controls in place around their promotions and advertising to ensure the ASAI’s standards were adhered to. They removed the social media post in question.

In breach of sections 3.3, 10.16, 10.17(a) (b) and (g) of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/leisure-betting-6/

 

 

The ASAI upheld complaints made by Intra Industry / Interested Parties in the following cases:

 

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
Paddy Power Portrayal of Persons and Property The Gaelic Players Association

said that none of the individuals had given their permission for their image to be used for this specific advertisement, nor had they given a general consent to Paddy Power for their images to be used in any way. They also said that they have campaigned strongly and determinedly for quite some time on the topic of gambling and young men. The advertisers noted that the Executive had requested comments on the complaint against the following Code provisions, Sections 2.4(c), 3.26, 3.27 and 3.29, however, they considered that Sections 3.28(a) and (b) and also 10.17 were also relevant.

In breach of section 3.27 of the code.

Complaint Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/leisure-gambling/

Johnson & Johnson Misleading/Comparison Two complaints were received regarding the video, one from a consumer complainant while the other was received from Irish Breeze. Both explained how the advertisement was misleading and how they were discrediting WaterWipes.

In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4 and 4.34 of the code.

Complaint was upheld in part.

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/health-beauty-22/

 

 

The following complaints were investigated and, following investigation, the ASAI Complaints Committee did not uphold the complaints.

 

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
Vodafone Decency and Propriety 15 complaints were received in relation to the advertisement. One complaint said;

the advertisement lacks information on the whereabouts of the boy’s biological dad and why it is necessary for him to call his mum’s new partner ‘Dad’. The advertisers argued the advertisement in question formed part of a wider family focused marketing campaign entitled ‘Family Firsts’ and was a celebration of the importance of connectivity between family members, no matter what the specific family structure may be.

Complaint Not Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/telecommunications-65/

Nissan Misleading Six complaints were received regarding this advertising campaign. Some said the headline offer

“get 2 new cars for the price of 1” was misleading as it implied that purchasers would have two cars when the offer involved the exchange of the car purchased in 2018 with a new model in 2019.

Complaint Not Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/motoring-23/

 

The following complaints were investigated and following investigation, the ASAI Complaints Committee did not uphold the complaints. The complaints were made by Intra Industry / Interested Parties:

 

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
Eir Misleading Three Ireland LTD objected to the advertisements for two reasons including misleading information about customers entering into a contract with Eir and Eir claiming to be “Ireland’s largest communications company”. Eir strongly disagreed with Three’s claims.

Complaint Not Upheld

Link:

http://www.asai.ie/complaint/telecommunications-66/

The ASAI conducts ongoing monitoring of advertising across all media and since 2007, has examined over 27,000 advertisements, with an overall compliance rate of 98 per cent. The ASAI Monitoring Service monitors compliance with the Complaints Committee’s adjudications.

Media members are reminded that advertisements found to be in breach of the Code cannot be accepted for publication.

 

www.asai.ie

 

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