DIARY: Office of Fair Trading beckons for Carter's multiple offender, ntl

You'd think that repeated slapped wrists by the Advertising

Standards Authority would be enough of a warning signal to an advertiser

and its agency, wouldn't you?

Seemingly not. It appears that the ASA's nerves are becoming

increasingly frayed by one company's appaling track record of trying to

pull the wool over people's eyes by advertising services in areas where

they aren't actually available and hiding small print. Naughty.

In fact, it's all led to the tenth pull-up in less than a year by the

ASA. There were five ads up for a slagging, and four upheld complaints.


Apparently, the ASA's heavy mob at the Committee of Advertising Practice

Copy Advice (scary) have been on to the perpetrators from the start, but

seem to have been ignored by the offending company. Not a wise move, as

the ASA could - gulp - refer it to the Office of Fair Trading and take

it to court.

So it's not a good move to piss it off - especially when you're an

advertiser as big as ntl and when your chief executive is none other

than the former boss of J. Walter Thompson, Stephen Carter. Honestly,

did all those years in adland teach him nothing apart from an

appreciation for the finer points of tank-top design?

- Got a Diary story? E-mail campaign@haynet.com or post it to Diary

editor, Campaign, 174 Hammersmith Road, London W6.