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ASA Ruling on Morgan Model Management

Morgan Model Management


Date:

26 September 2012

Media:

Internet (classified), Internet (on own site), Internet (OM 3rd party)

Sector:

Employment

Number of complaints:

1

Complaint Ref:

A12-194005

Background

 Summary of Council decision:

Nine issues were investigated, all were Upheld.

Ad

Claims on www.morganmodelmanagement.com and ads on Gumtree, Casting Now and QYPE:.

a. The website stated "MORGAN Model Management are one of the leading model managements in the United Kingdom ... MORGAN Models have walked some of the biggest Runways in the world, please view our video below that shows some of our models in action on the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) in Spring 2010 ... MORGAN Model Management are now one of the biggest model suppliers to different companies around the globe and some of the most greatest events around ...".  The "Statement" page included a list of company names including Toni & Guy, MTV, BBC, The Prince of Wales Polo Event, Granada TV, Channel 4, Paco Rabanne and CNN News.

b. The ad on Gumtree was headed "Models Wanted Bridlington, York Contract type Permanent". Text stated "MORGAN Model Management want to get you into the modelling industry whether it be fashion, runway, glamour, commercial etc.  If you have been trying to break into the modelling industry for a while or even if you are a beginner MORGAN will kick start your career.  If you would like to hit the modelling industry with a feisty attitude with a very old fashioned, vintage look, then choose the Fashion Vintage Portfolio which is at the lowest price of only £1,400.00.  However if you want to show off your very fashionable attitude, then go for our Fashion Modern Portfolio of only £1,200.00.  If you would like to be a Glamour Model you will need to choose the Glamour Portfolio of only £1,085.00 All make-up and Hair styling will be included with each portfolio if you require it ...".

c. The ad on Casting Now was headed "MORGAN Model Management are now open and waiting for your talent".  Text stated "If you have no experience it is not a problem.  We have famous agents that we are currently in cooperation with ...".

d. The ad on QYPE stated "Morgan Model Management West Cowick, Goole.  If you want to kick start your career in Modelling [sic] Morgan Model management [sic] will get you there!".

Issue

Clive Hurst challenged whether:

1. the claim "MORGAN Model Management are one of the leading model managements in the United Kingdom ..." in ad (a) was misleading and could be substantiated;

2. the claim "some of our models in action on the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) in Spring 2010" in ad (a) could be substantiated;

3. the claim "MORGAN Model Management are now one of the biggest model suppliers to different companies around the globe and some of the most greatest events around ..." in ad (a) was misleading and could be substantiated;

4. the companies listed in ad (a) was misleading and could be substantiated, because it implied that the advertiser had supplied models to those companies;

5.  ad (b) misleadingly implied that the advertiser could offer work to models;

6. ad (b) was misleading, because it did not make clear that additional charges were applicable;

7. the claim "MORGAN Model Management are now open and waiting for your talent" in ad (c) gave the misleading impression that they were a modelling agent and able to find applicants work;

8. the claim "We have famous agents that we are currently in cooperation with ..." in ad (c) was misleading and could be substantiated; and

9. the claim "If you want to kick start your career in Modelling [sic] Morgan Model management [sic] will get you there!" in ad (d) could be substantiated, because it implied the advertiser had found work for the models who joined.

CAP Code (Edition 12)

Response

Morgan Model Management (MMM) did not respond to our enquiries.

Assessment

1. – 9. Upheld

The ASA was concerned by MMM's lack of response and apparent disregard for the Code, which was a breach of CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 1.7 (Unreasonable delay).  We reminded them of their responsibility to respond promptly to our enquiries and told them to do so in future.

We noted we had not seen evidence to support the claims "MORGAN Model Management are one of the leading model managements in the United Kingdom", "… some of our models in action on the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) in Spring 2010" and "MORGAN Model Management are now one of the biggest model suppliers to different companies around the globe and some of the greatest events around ..." on the website (a) or that MMM had supplied models to the companies listed.   No evidence was provided to support the claim "We have famous agents that we are currently in cooperation with ..." in ad (c).  We considered that, because those claims had not been substantiated, they were therefore misleading.

We did not see evidence to show that MMM could offer work to models and therefore considered that ads (b), (c) and (d) gave a misleading impression of the service offered.  Ad (b) included the prices for different types of portfolios, but we understood from the complainant that other compulsory charges were also likely.  Because we saw no evidence to show that other compulsory charges were not applied, we considered that ad (b) gave a misleading impression of the likely cost of the service offered.

The claims on the website (a) and ads (b), (c) and (d) breached CAP Code (edition 12) rules 1.7 (Unreasonable delay), 3.1 and 3.3 (Misleading advertising), 3.7 (Substantiation), 3.11 (Exaggeration) and 20.2 (Employment, homework schemes and business opportunities).

Action

The claims on the website (a) and ads (b), (c) and (d) must not appear again in their current form.  We referred the matter to the CAP Compliance team.

How to comply with the rules

For advice and training on the Advertising Codes please visit the CAP website.

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