The Advertising Regulatory Board recently passed a number of significant changes to the Code of Advertising Practice. Practitioners need to be aware of these changes, which particularly impact the procedure. The correct version of the Code is the one on the website at www.arb.org.za , and the changes outlined in this article are not exhaustive, so regard should always be hard to the actual Code.
Some general changes are:
Practitioners should particularly note the following procedural changes:
“9.13 While the parties are entitled to bring any interlocutory applications appropriate in order to enforce their rights, parties are reminded that self-regulation is, by its nature, intended to be quick, cheap, and solution-driven. Parties who lodge interlocutory applications merely to frustrate the process are acting contrary to the spirit of the Code. Parties may, at the discretion of the Chair of the AAC or FAC, as relevant, be penalised for this behavior by forfeiting the refundable portion of their appeal fee.
9.14 Interlocutory decisions made by the Head of the Directorate or the Chair of the AAC are not appealable.”
“5.4 Documentation which does not meet or follow the above criteria and processes will not be regarded as confidential. Parties are alerted that all correspondence with the ARB that does not fall within the above criteria may, at any time and at the discretion of the ARB, be shared with the other party.
5.5 Parties are alerted that the decisions of the ARB are published on the ARB website in the interests of transparency. This will include the name of the complainant(s) and the Advertiser.”
“Advertisements must not include sounds that are likely to create a safety hazard, for example, to those listening to the radio while driving.”
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Gail Schimmel (BA Psych (Hon) LLB LLM) is an admitted attorney and the CEO of the Advertising Regulatory Board. She has also published 5 novels, as well as Juta’s invaluable guide for the advertising practitioner – Advertising Law.
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