Broadcast Advertising Code Consultation Deadline - 22 July 2008

United Kingdom

The Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) is currently looking to update the advertising codes to reflect recent legal developments. The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations (CPRs) and the Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations (BPRs), which prohibit unfair and misleading trading practices, including in advertising, came into force on 26 May 2008.

While the non-broadcast code (the CAP Code) has already been revised to take into account the new provisions in those Regulations, the Broadcast Committee for Advertising Practice (BCAP) has opened up a consultation on the proposed changes to the broadcast code. Responses to the broadcast consultation must be received by 22 July.

CAP has also advised that it may also take into consideration any changes that BCAP makes as a result of its consultation in its forthcoming comprehensive review of the CAP Code.

One of the issues which has attracted much debate has been the impact of the new Regulations on ‘Buy One Get One Free’ (BOGOF) offers. The amended CAP Code has deleted the rule that “a free offer may be conditional upon the purchase of other items”, despite assurances that BOGOF offers have not been excluded, leaving a degree of uncertainty for advertisers. This, and the use of the term ‘free’ in other contexts, will no doubt be a key area of debate during the consultation.

Please click here to go direct to the CAP consultation page.

Please click here (CPRs) and here (BPRs) for full text versions of the Regulations.