The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) rulings are published every Wednesday and set out on the public record how, following investigation, the advertising rules apply and where the ASA draw the line in judging whether an ad has broken the rules.
This week’s rulings have been published, and the following advertisers have been formally investigated:
Rulings for 02 January 2019
A website for Equine 74, www.equine74.com, a supplement for horses, seen on 18 June 2018, featured a homepage titled “A Safe and Natural Way of Maintaining a Healthy Stomach”. The page including text stating “Equine 74 Gastric helps to maintain a healthy pH level in the stomach by acting as a long-lasting buffer”, and …
- Assured Food Standards – Not Upheld
Two TV ads, seen in September 2018, for Assured Food Standards’ Red Tractor Scheme:a. The first ad featured a voice-over which stated, “Behind a Red Tractor is peace of mind when putting food upon your table. UK farmed, meticulously checked, just look for the Red Tractor label. There are thousands of checks, thoro…
- BetterBathrooms (UK) Ltd – Upheld
Four banner ads seen on www.betterbathrooms.com in April 2018:
a. A banner which included the text “APRIL SHOWERS UP TO 70% OFF* FINAL WEEK … + AN EXTRA 20% OFF** SELECTED CABINS AND ENCLOSURES … enter code CAB20 at checkout”.
b. A banner which included the text “APRIL SHOWERS UP TO 70% OFF* NOW ON … + AN EXTRA 20% OFF** SELECTED WALK-INS AND FURNITURE … enter code APRIL20 at checkout”.
c. A banner which included the text “APRIL SHOWERS UP TO 70% OFF* NOW ON … + AN EXTRA 20% OFF** SHOWERS … with code SHOWERS20 at checkout”.
d. A banner which included the text “APRIL SHOWERS UP TO 70% OFF* NOW ON … + AN EXTRA 20% OFF** QUADRANTS … with code QUADS20 at checkout”.
- Good Energy Ltd – Upheld
A website for Good Energy, www.goodenergy.co.uk, seen in September 2017, stated on a page titled Our fuel mix: “At Good Energy, we believe the UK can be powered purely by renewables. We source all our electricity from renewable sources like solar power, wind power and hydroelectric power and biofuels. We always have do…
- HMK V AG t/a Windsor Mint – Upheld
A TV ad for Windsor Mint, seen on 10 April 2018, promoted a coin commemorating Queen Elizabeth II’s Sapphire Jubilee, which featured an image of the Queen and the text “One Crown”. The voice-over stated, “This year, Queen Elizabeth the Second, the first monarch ever in British history to reign over 65 years, celebrates…
- John Mills Ltd t/a JML – Upheld in part
A TV ad for JML, seen on 4 July 2018. The ad for the Arctic Air portable conditioner included a male voice-over, who said “Create your own chill zone this summer with Arctic Air, the incredible personal space cooler from JML. Arctic Air’s evaporative air cooling technology reduces temperatures by up to 40%.” On screen …
- Paypal (Europe) Sarl et Cie – Upheld in part
Three ads for PayPal products, seen in September 2018:
a. A TV ad for the PayPal Account service featured three people getting ready to go out. One man got a notification on his phone showing he was in an online queue to buy trainers and sat back down as his friend looked annoyed. A woman and a man’s voices said, “No!”; “Drop everything”; “The biggest club night of the year and you’re “; “112th in the queue”; “A shoe queue? I’ve seen it all now”; “200 quid?”.; “Chill out, dude”. A voiceover said, “Paypal lets you choose between credit and debit at checkout. Perfect when you need that extra bit for those …”. The man was shown opening a shoebox with a look of wonder on his face. His friend asked “Are you ever gonna wear those things?” The man shook his head. The voice-over continued “… you know, essential purchases.”
b. A video on demand ad was the same as ad (a).
c. An email promoting PayPal Credit was addressed to the complainant and headed “We don’t give 0% to everyone [name] … but PayPal Credit might be perfect for you”. Further text stated “You’ll also enjoy 0% interest on anything over £150 for 4 months* so you can treat yourself to some fun experiences, big buys or impromptu trips. And we’ll give you 0% again … and again and again. Pay over 4 months* every time you spend £150+ in one basket”. Small text at the bottom of the email linked by an asterisk stated “*The minimum payment due still applies to 0% offer balances. Any remaining balance due after the 4-months promotional period or any transactions under £150 will be charged interest at 17.9% p.a. (variable). In order to maintain the 0% offer, you need to keep up monthly repayments and stay within your credit limit”.
A direct mailing for Provident, a credit provider, dated November 2018, featured text at the top of the page which stated “Short term cash loans £100 – £1,000 Subject to affordability” and “Representative 535.3% APR”. Text in the middle of the page stated “[recipient’s first name], It wouldn’t …
- Sandbeck Farm – Upheld
A website for Sandbeck Farm, www.sandbeckfarm.com, seen on 22 November 2017 included a number of pages in a “FALABELLA HORSES” section. A page headed “FALABELLA FOALS 2017” listed a number of foals, some which were for sale. Each horse had an information section next to the listing which included various pieces of info…
- Servicing Stop Ltd – Upheld in part
The website www.servicingstop.co.uk for the car servicing company Servicing Stop:a. The home page of the website, seen in February 2017, included the claim “up to 60% off” and then listed their servicing discounts for a Kia Sedona car: “Full service £114.92” with the price “£287.30” struck out alongside text which stat…
a. The website www.nspcc.org.uk, seen on 11 November 2017, featured an image of a young girl with text that stated “1 in 20 children experience sexual abuse”.
b. The TV ad, seen on 11 January 2018 featured a school teacher and a young girl playing netball and featured dialogue between the two characters: “Something’s happening. Something’s happening. Something bad. Something bad. I’m too afraid to say anything. Too afraid to say anything. I know I’ve got to be brave. I know I’ve got to be brave. It’s hard. It’s hard. Talk to me. Talk to me”.
Towards the end of the ad, on-screen text appeared, which stated “1 in 20 children experience sexual abuse”.
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Previous rulings: 19 December 2018