A video ad, shown during a series of children's nursery rhymes on YouTube, featured images of a number of bottles of spirits. The voice-over stated "These litre bottles of spirits are £15 each ..."
The complainant challenged whether it was irresponsible to show the ad during a video that was targeted at young children.
Morrisons said the ad had been cleared by Clearcast as it was also to appear on TV. They said the restrictions applied by Clearcast in respect of the broadcast ad had also been provided to the organisation that was responsible for placing their ads online, but it did not appear that those restrictions had been adhered to in this instance.
YouTube said they had mechanisms in place that should prevent alcohol content from being served during content that was family-friendly, but they did not recommend that users should log in with an account that declared they were over 18 years of age if they were watching YouTube with a minor.
The ASA noted that both Morrisons and YouTube had processes in place that were intended to ensure that ads for alcohol were not directed at those under 18 years of age. However, we considered that the YouTube video in question was very unlikely to be viewed by an adult unless they were watching with a young child. We concluded that although Morrisons had taken all reasonable steps to ensure that the ad was targeted responsibly, it had not been targeted responsibly and therefore the ad breached the Code.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 1.3 1.3 Marketing communications must be prepared with a sense of responsibility to consumers and to society. (Social responsibility), 5.1 5.1 Marketing communications addressed to, targeted directly at or featuring children must contain nothing that is likely to result in their physical, mental or moral harm: (Children) and 18.15 18.15 Marketing communications must not be directed at people under 18 through the selection of media or the context in which they appear. No medium should be used to advertise alcoholic drinks if more than 25% of its audience is under 18 years of age. (Alcohol).
We told Morrisons to ensure their ads were appropriately targeted in future.