ASA Weekly Rulings Published

Aug 16th '17

This weeks rulings have been published. The following advertisers have been formally investigated by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Rulings for: 16 August 2017

A poster for Bio-tiful Dairy’s Kefir drink, seen on the London Underground network in May 2017, included text which stated “BIOTIFUL DAIRY’S 2000 YEAR OLD SECRET TO BETTER DIGESTION … Long ago, the people of the Caucasus Mountains discovered a miracle drink that naturally boosted digestion and immunity. They called …

A website for Equicast UK,, a supplier of products designed to relieve problems in horse hooves seen 18 April 2017, promoted a product called “Equicast”. Text on the page stated “Equicast can be used as a “spare tyre” (that the owner applies) until a farrier can replace the shoe”. Further down the…

A website and TV ad for HouseSimple Ltd, an online estate agent:

a. The website, seen in February 2017, stated on its “Estate Agent Fees explained” page that “High street estate agent fees are usually worked out as a percentage of the final sale price of your property. This can range from 1.5% to 4% (plus 20% VAT – which often isn’t clearly highlighted as an extra cost), adding up to an average bill of £5,247” and that online estate agents were “much cheaper”.

b. A TV ad, seen on 14 March 2017, stated in the voice-over that “Get an expert evaluation, professional photos and floor plans … just like a traditional estate agent … but the big difference, HouseSimple customers saved on average £5,000 in fees.” Text at the bottom of the screen stated “Based on responses of 391 previous HouseSimple customers surveyed.”

a. A landing page, which consumers were directed to from a link that appeared on social media, for an online shoe retailer JustFab (UK) Ltd seen on 1 October 2016 featured text that stated, “JUST FAB National Bootie Day New VIP Member Exclusive First Style from £9 That’s 75% Off” and featured a button that stated “GET STARTED”. Further down the page was the text “New VIP Member Exclusive FIRST PAIR FROM £9 HOW IT WORKS Take Our Short Style Quiz And Get 75% Off Your First Item ONLY TAKES ONE MINUTE!”. Underneath this was another button which stated “Get Started”. At the bottom of the page was small print that stated “Select VIP Member option at checkout to receive the offer. Offer cannot be applied to Regular orders. The items of lesser value will be free. Cannot be combined with any other offer or applied to any previous order. Good for one order only. Free delivery to UK on all orders £35 and above”.

b. The home page of the website,, featured text that stated “1 TAKE A FUN STYLE QUIZ 2 GET A PERSONALISED BOUTIQUE 3 SHOP, BECOME A VIP MEMBER AND SAVE”. Half-way down the home page was further text that stated “EXCLUSIVE MEMBER PRICING VIP members enjoy member-only pricing on all full-priced styles …”. Upon clicking on the two pieces of text consumers were directed to the style quiz and once completed, required to register as a member. They were then able to purchase their first pair of shoes at the discounted price.

At the bottom of the page was a pink box with text that stated “HERE’S HOW IT WORKS Shop or Skip the Month The choice to shop is always yours! If you need more time to shop or have decided not to purchase, click Skip the Month button in your boutique by the 5th of each month and you won’t be charged. You can Skip as many months as you want! VIP Member Credit If you don’t shop or Skip the month by the 5th of each month, your card will be charged £35 on the 6th for a member credit until you cancel. Each credit can be redeemed toward 1 JustFab item, so use it to shop later! Cancel Any Time If you’re not completely satisfied with your VIP membership, you can cancel it at any time by calling our Member Services Team on 020 36953 830 …”. Below this was small print that stated “Upon enrolment in the VIP membership programme, if you do not make a purchase or log into your account to Skip The Month between the 1st and the 5th of the month, your credit card will be charged £35 for a member credit on the 6th until you cancel. You may cancel at any time by calling 020 36953 830 …”.

A website for the gambling operator Titanbet (, seen on 8 April 2017. On the promotions page, text stated “Enjoy free bets and cash bonuses with Titanbet promotions!”. Below this were links to a number of different promotions including one headed “Get Faller Insurance at Titanbet. Place a bet on a…

A product listing on, for The Christy Skirt, seen on 2 March 2017, which featured an image of a woman from the neck down wearing a top that partially exposed her breasts and revealed a nipple piercing.

A display ad for ReimagePlus, an online PC repair service, seen on 21 April 2017, which stated “Don’t be part of the statistics. 1 out of 3 computers is infected by malware every single day”.

Two digital outdoor ads displayed on large screens in two stations in central London, for the film Alien: Covenant, seen in early May 2017:

a. The first ad began with a spacecraft approaching a planet followed by scenes on the planet. In one scene a man in a dark room shined a torch on an alien egg, the top of which began to slowly open. A close-up showed an alien-like mouth suddenly exploding from it, towards the camera. A woman in distress was then shown running down a corridor, being chase by an arachnid-like alien, followed by a close-up of her screaming. An arachnid-like alien was then shown running towards the camera. The final shot showed a woman hiding from an alien which was just on the other side of a door frame.

b. The second ad featured large on-screen text which stated in turn: “RUN”, “HIDE”, “SCREAM” and “PRAY”. The text appeared next to brief clips from the film, including the scene with the woman in distress running down a corridor being chased by an alien, the alien egg slowly opening, the close-up of the woman screaming, a woman looking panicked and shouting through the glass window in a closed door, the close-up of the alien-like mouth suddenly exploding towards the camera, and the final shot of a woman hiding from an alien which was just on the other side of a door frame.

A magazine ad for a local e-cigarette store, Vape Station, seen in the March 2017 edition of The Journal magazine. The ad featured images of six e-cigarettes above the text “OVER 80 UK Manufactured flavours to choose from” and featured the headline claim “THE HEALTHIER OPTION TO CIGARETTE SMOKING”…


ASA adjudications provide important guidance to advertisers on how the Advertising Codes are to be interpreted. They act as a transparent record of their policy for consumers, media, government, industry and society at large on what is and isn’t acceptable in advertising.

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Previous rulings: 09 August 2017