Call 03332 207 677

James Perrin

Lice Advert Scratched: ASA Issues First Website Ruling

27th Apr 2011 News, Industry News 1 minute to read


For the first time, The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has used their new regulatory powers to rule on a website claiming to repel head lice.

Last month the ASA’s powers were extended to cover non paid for online marketing communications in addition to the paid for marketing communications (paid search, banner ads, pop ups, etc) they already cover. Now the advertising watchdog has given the online marketing world its first ruling, showing exactly the standards they expect when marketing online.

According to the Press Association, a complaint was made about the Maperton Trust website, an educational holistic health charity. The website claimed to offer, “The latest technology to repel head lice from infesting children and adults”.

The ASA upheld the complaint and investigated the website. They asked the charity to submit correspondence between themselves and the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). The charity claimed the agency was satisfied with the way the product had been marketed, however the correspondents did not actually state satisfaction to any specific product.

Therefore the ASA found the advert to be a misleading substantiation regarding health related products which breaches CAP Code rules. As a result the Maperton Trust had to remove all claims that the product can repel head lice.

What makes this significant was that it was the first ruling from the ASA since the extension of their remit on 1st March 2011. Covering all organisations operating in the UK, the ASA’s new powers mean that they can rule on any website’s non paid and paid for marketing communications, except user generated content (UGC).

According to Marketing Week complaints regarding online marketing communications are on the rise, which justifies why the ASA’s remit had to be extended. However UGC still seems to be a problem – enforcing codes on social media activity would be a near impossible task and one that would be met with fierce criticism.

As discussed at the Brighton SEO conference [See: #BrightonSEO 2011 Conference Review] revealing that webmasters must stay on the right side of the ASA if they want to progress and not fall foul of their rising powers. Their first landmark ruling will be a stark reminder of their new control and point out the standards to which the online marketing industry should follow.

Share this post

James Perrin
About the author

James Perrin

Content Marketing Manager, James Perrin is a regular contributor to the Koozai blog. Well experienced in sales and marketing, James also has a passion for journalism and media, especially new media. From the latest industry related new stories to copywriting advice, James will provide you with plenty of digital marketing information.

2 Comments

What do you think?

  • aspect-ratio UK Search Awards Sam Noble Winner
    Cat Birch

    Samantha Noble Wins UK Search Personality 2016 at UK Search Awards

    The UK Search Awards is an exciting night for all; brimming with excitement, anticipation and pride, these awards showcase the very best in Digital Marketing. Our pride was overflowing as we watched our very own Sam Noble be honoured with the top prize of the night: UK Search Personality 2016.

    (more…)

    Cat Birch
    @MissCatBirch
    2nd Dec 2016
    News
  • aspect-ratio UK Search Awards Sam Noble Winner
    Cat Birch

    Koozai Shortlisted for Three Awards at the UK Search Awards 2016

    The UK Search Awards are here and we’re pleased to announce that we’ve been shortlisted for three awards at this prestigious ceremony.

    What an incredible year 2016 has been for us so far. We’ve celebrated turning 10 as a company, and in the last few months alone we’ve been nominated for a range of campaigns, won a bunch of awards and now we’ve been shortlisted for even more success.

    (more…)

    Cat Birch
    @MissCatBirch
    30th Nov 2016
    News

Digital Ideas Monthly

Sign up now and get our free monthly email. It’s filled with our favourite pieces of the news from the industry, SEO, PPC, Social Media and more. And, don’t forget - it’s free, so why haven’t you signed up already?