What is the ASA Up To?

By | May 7, 2017

FISP has long-held that broadband marketing practice in the UK needs an overhaul.

We’ve been encouraged to believe that pressure on the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to reconsider their judgements is evident from Ministerial responses to questions posed at conferences and seminars.

The Consumer organisation ‘Which?’ has pursued the topic with some vigour and now, in the context of a positive signal from the ASA, is campaigning to prevent any backsliding on that resolve.

The Which? campaign ‘Is broadband advertising about to be reset?‘  has in just a few days attracted well over 100 comments – and many these are interesting indicators of wider public awareness and the great need for stronger market education.

The focus of the Which? campaign is not the misleading description ‘Fibre Broadband’ – a service often part-delivered via copper pairs – but the advertising of headline speeds that are rarely experienced.  The contention that an advertising claim is valid if just 10% of consumers get the full service, reminds us of the presentation script written back in June 2015 contrasting broadband with a box of eggs – ‘This box contains up to 10 eggs

The root of this consumer conflict lies in a fundamental design issue – the use of an inappropriate technology to deliver a fundamentally different service with different consumer requirements that render redundant the telephony service for which those ancient twisted copper pairs were originally designed.