Ads for e-cigarettes and gambling will be subject to new rules

New code from advertising standards body to come into force on Tuesday

 Ads suggesting e-cigarettes are positive or ones which exaggerate the environmental benefits of particular products will fall foul of a new advertising watchdog code coming into force on Tuesday. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Ads suggesting e-cigarettes are positive or ones which exaggerate the environmental benefits of particular products will fall foul of a new advertising watchdog code coming into force on Tuesday. Photograph: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

 

Ads suggesting e-cigarettes are positive or ones which exaggerate the environmental benefits of particular products will fall foul of a new advertising watchdog code coming into force on Tuesday.

The new code will also more tightly control how ads are directed at children and force bookies to encourage more responsible gambling.

The code is however voluntary and has been drawn up by the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI) which is financed by the advertising industry. As a result it has no legal standing.

The new rules ask ASAI members to ensure that all “marketing communications for e-cigarettes should be socially responsible and should contain nothing which promotes the use of a tobacco product or shows the use of a tobacco product in a positive light.”

They also mandate that “advertisements for gambling services or products shall contain a message to encourage responsible gambling and shall direct people to a source of information about gambling and gambling responsibly”.

An updated food section brings the code into line with EU Regulation concerning nutritional and health claims and it has been overhauled to protect consumers from misleading or false claims.

There are also modifications as to how advertisers can target children. “Except those for fresh fruit or fresh vegetables, marketing communications should not seem to encourage children to eat or drink a product only to take advantage of a promotional offer: the product should be offered on its merits, with the offer as an added incentive,” the code states.

Rules in the environmental section are designed to ensure that marketing communications do not exaggerate the environmental benefits to consumers of products or services.

The chief executive of the ASAI Orla Twomey said the code was being published in the best interests of consumers, all involved in advertising and Irish society in general.

“We live in a world of ever-changing communication innovations, channels, platforms and demands. In producing [THE]seventh edition of the ASAI Code, we undertook the widest and most transparent consultative process in our history,” she said.

“It is compatible with current Irish and EU legislation, matches the very best international standards, and demonstrates how the combination of Self-Regulation and Statutory Legislation can be used in the best interests of all concerned. To ensure [IT]will remain, at all times, credible and relevant, there will be regular inspection and appraisal of the code with an on-going process of additions, amendments and strengthening, as required.”