ASA unveils new report on advertisements breaching rules
The Advertising Standards Authority, better known as the ASA, has announced the results of its latest monitoring sweeps. These types of audits have been a portion of the authority’s year-long plan that aims to point out and steer clear from age-restricted adverts taking up space in children’s online media.
The audit, which took about three months from October of 2020 to December of 2020, was made up of the use of monitoring tools that identify age-restricted ads and take a look at a sample consisting of 49 websites and 12 YouTube channels which are more prone to drawing in underage audiences.
All advertisements that include or hint at topics including e-cigarettes, alcohol, tobacco, weight-loss products, gambling and sugary/fatty/salty foods were inspected and the results proved that 47 age-restricted ads had made their way onto children’s media. Aside from that, 21 advertisers were revealed to have placed age-restricted ads on 8 YouTube channels and 23 websites that attract a large underage audience.
ASA’s statement read:
Following our first and second reports, the ASA is encouraged by the lower number of ads found to have broken the rules. Once we have run the monitoring again in Q1 2021, we will in the summer publish a final report, reflecting back on this year-long project and in which we reserve the discretion to publicise repeat offenders, if there are any.
The amount of ads for weight-loss, gambling and alcohol remained constant. Taking a closer look at gambling, 3 ad breaches across 3 different websites were recorded, and they were all made by the same advertiser.
Chief executive of the ASA Guy Parker also said:
We remain alive to concerns and we will be monitoring and reporting on this again. But we’re making significant progress in our ambition to build a culture of zero tolerance for age-restricted ads appearing on websites aimed at children and we expect that progress to continue.