The European Union's comprehensive study looking at the impact of
advertising and teleshopping on children has concluded that there is no
need for further restrictions on advertising to children.
This conclusion should sound the death-knell for the Swedish
Government's plans for a European-wide ban on children's advertising.
The EU report examined the legislation, self-regulatory codes and
complaints about advertising to children across 15 EU member states. It
looked at advertising on TV as well as across press, outdoor, radio,
cinema and the internet.
Four main points were picked up in the EU's study. It concluded that the
EU's Television Without Frontiers Directive provided the most effective
and flexible framework to protect children. It felt that TV was more
heavily regulated than any other medium and that self-regulation
complemented the existing legal framework.
Sara Soltani, the director of the research and campaigning group, the
Children's Programme, said: 'We sincerely hope that this report will see
an end to calls for the kind of Draconian legislation at a European
level that would decimate investment in high quality children's
programming to the detriment of children across the EU.'
A spokesperson for ITV said: 'Broadcasters often have to counter the
argument that there is no effective statutory regulation of advertising
in and around children's programmes. The publication of 1,000 pages of
independent research setting out the measures in place across Europe
must forever bury this myth.'
The EU survey follows a stinging rebuke by Viviane Reding, a member of
the EU Commission, to Sweden's consumer affairs minister, Marita
Ulvskog, who has been backing the EU ban on TV advertising to
Reding stated: 'I don't believe in a ban. It is not right to
discriminate between the media, so a ban on TV ads must also apply to
the internet and the printed media.'