The 2013 Annual Report shows how our work in 2013 has achieved some significant changes in advertising practice for the benefit of consumers and business as well as outlining our ambition – to make every UK ad a responsible ad.
The report also highlights how our ongoing work tackling misleading ads brought about real benefits for consumers and business. Through ASA rulings, proactive monitoring of ads as well as CAP help and advice we helped make sure ads are clear and responsible, including by taking action on:
- Payday loan ads – alongside ASA bans of socially irresponsible ads that trivialised taking out a high interest loan, CAP published new guidance for advertisers in the payday loan sector clearly setting out the criteria for preparing their ads in a responsible way
- Copycat websites – we banned several ads and claims on websites by companies charging a premium for services such as passport and driving licence renewals that are provided much cheaper or even free by Government. We also commissioned research to help us understand how these sites cause confusion and help us tackle poor practice
- Theatre ticket pricing – we brought theatre ticket providers into line for failing to include compulsory administrative fees in prices on their websites until late in the purchasing process. We also assessed 130 websites and worked directly with 55 businesses to correct the pricing on their sites
- Letting agent fees – we took action to require all letting agents to be up-front in their ads about non-optional fees, like reference costs or admin fees, that they charge as well as issuing detailed guidance to trade bodies and the lettings sector on how to avoid misleading prospective tenants.