The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a self-regulatory body for protection of consumer interests, has stated that Idea Cellular’s advertisement campaigns for promoting their Idea Internet Network (IIN) is misleading the public.
For the month of February, 2015 ASCI received total of 167 complaints against Indian advertisers, and out of which, they upheld 125 complaints. Interestingly, out of 125 misleading advertisements, 73 were related with health and lifestyle niche.
Along with Idea’s campaigns, ASCI also upheld complaints against Horlicks which is owned by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Ltd. Additionally, several complaints against educational institutions such as Institute of Management Studies (IMS), Triumphant Institute of Management Education Pvt. Ltd. (TIME), and Institute of Finance Banking & Insurance (IFBI) were also upheld.
The Misleading Ads
Idea’s Idea Internet Network:
This particular complaint was against Idea’s advertisement meant for Harayana, where it is shown that a girl empowers herself using Idea internet. As per ASCI, this ad not only disrespects the state, but also gives a false impression to all viewers that Harayana doesn’t not allow its daughters to study and Idea Internet can replace a college degree.
Similarly, several other IIN ads were also reported for highlighting false, and misleading information.
The complaint against Horlicks was regarding mis-information pertaining to examinations. As per various ad campaigns by Horlicks, they are trying to give an impressions that consuming Horlicks can help the student get more marks as it ‘improve concentration’.
It seems that Horlicks had deliberately targeted the examination sessions which is going on, to leverage the fear and apprehensions. ASCI has upheld the complaint.
This specific advertisement received complaint that it showcases kids catching Glucon D tablet directly into mouth, which is certainly dangerous.
ASCI said, “The visual of the advertisement shows kids flipping the Glucon-D Volt tablet into the air and catching in the mouth directly, which is seen as a dangerous act and is likely to encourage minors to emulate such act in a manner which could cause harm or injury”
Few ad were released by Dabur, which claimed that Dabur Chyawanprash can give kids 3 times more power and immunity to fight diseases, which was again without any proof or evidence.
ASCI said, “Dabur advertisement claims that Dabur Chyawanprash gives three times more immunity which makes kids strong from within and increases immunity that is the ability to fight illness by three times, were unsubstantiated,”
Recently, ASCI has initiated a unique online training module, which teaches both advertisement students and consumers to recognize ethical and factually correct ads. Participants can learn more about ASCI’s guidelines and ethical way of advertising products.