ASA, the UK advertising watchdog, has banned YouView’s launch ads after agreeing with Virgin Media that claims the service was ‘unique’ and the ‘easiest’ were false. The ads had run on TV and in the Radio Times.
The claims objected to included: “YouView is the easiest way to watch catch-up TV, on your TV” and the assertion that its electronic programme function has a “unique scroll-back function”.
The ASA said that YouView had failed to ask the general, basic question about whether it was in fact the easiest way to watch catchup video on their TV sets. “We concluded the claim had not been adequately substantiated,” the ASA said.
The watchdog also concluded that the “unique” claim was misleading as YouView is not the only service on the market offering a scroll-back function on its programme guide.
The ASA said the ads could not run again without changes and told YouView “to ensure they held adequate evidence to substantiate comparative claims and to ensure their claims were not misleading”.
YouView said that it has made the changes required by the ASA – removing the claim “easiest” and not using the word “unique” again – and that the ads can now continue to be aired and the campaign will be run again in the coming months.
ASA also ruled against a TV ad and direct mail campaign run by TalkTalk which is aiming to add to its broadband and phone services by offering YouView TV, ran an ad campaign claiming it was offering free YouView set-top boxes to customers.
A complainant said the ad campaign was misleading as there was a £50 (€57) engineer installation cost, which the ASA agreed was in breach of rules promising “free” goods.