The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is to charge online
advertisers an annual fee to be part of its accreditation scheme, which is
scheduled to go live this autumn.
The ASA is working in partnership with its branding agency to develop the
logo and branding of the scheme. Advertisers will be able to download the
logo onto their ads or at the first point of clickthrough from the site
provided they accept certain criteria for ad content. The fee is expected
to be under #1,000.
The scheme will be based on the code written by industry body The
Committee for Advertising Practice. The code draws attention to issues
such as ads not being clearly identifiable as such, giving misleading
information or being inappropriate in their market and media context.
”If people think online ads are trustworthy, they’re more likely to
interact with them and advertisers are more likely to get responses,” said
Chris Reed, external affairs manager at the ASA. He said the organisation
had received 87 complaints about net-related companies in 1998, 161 in
1999, and had already received that number so far this year.
Danny Meadows-Klue, chairman of the Internet Advertising Bureau, said:
”The ad industry has a great tradition of self-regulation and it’s
important we preserve this.”
In its latest monthly report, the ASA upheld complaints from Freeserve,
Cable & Wireless, BT, ISP Business Online and comparative shopping site