Following a constructive meeting, the ASA, CAP and the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) have agreed a number of actions to clarify the ASA's extended digital remit as far as it relates to public relations.
The ASA and CAP have confirmed that online public relations would not be covered by the CAP Code. The exclusions within the CAP Code relating to public relations, including 'press releases, other public relations material and editorial content', underline this. The ASA is concerned only with marketing communications, which includes advertising, sales promotion and direct marketing.
As discussions around some boundaries are particularly complex in the online environment, the CIPR will provide the ASA and CAP with a clear description of current public relations practice and activity examples, including social media activities. That input will provide the basis for further discussions between the ASA, CAP and the CIPR on where boundaries should be drawn between marketing communications and public relations. Marketing communications will fall within the Code; ‘press releases, other public relations material and editorial content' will fall outside the Code.
The ASA, CAP and CIPR are committed to continuing productive discussions.