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ASAI Complaints Bulletin – Release No. 5 2018

Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland

releases latest Complaints Bulletin


  • 15 advertisements found to be in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Promotion and Recognisability


17th December 2018 – The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland’s (ASAI) independent Complaints Committee has released its latest Complaints Bulletin, which contains 20 case reports on complaints recently investigated by the organisation.


15 of the 20 advertisements were found to have been in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Recognisability, Promotion, Portrayal of Person, Decency & Propriety and Health & Beauty. The advertisements complained of related to Internet, Social Media, Online, SMS and Radio advertising. Neither of the two complaints relating to intra-industry / interested parties were upheld. The ASAI Complaints Committee chose not to uphold a further three consumer complaints.


The Complaints Committee is a completely independent arm of the ASAI and is responsible for considering and dealing with complaints submitted by the public, by a member of the ASAI, by a Government Department or any other person or body of persons. The Committee is made up of a range of experts from the advertising, media, education, consumer and marketing sectors. See further details here –


Commenting on the latest ASAI rulings, Orla Twomey, Chief Executive of the ASAI, stated:


The last complaints bulletin of 2018 once again highlights our ability to handle complaints across a large number of mediums.  In particular, the ASAI has seen significant growth in the area of influencer marketing in recent years. Bloggers and those who carry significant influence on social media are becoming increasingly more prevalent within the world of advertising. However, it is essential that bloggers observe the ASAI Code and recognise their responsibilities both to their audiences, to consumers and to society.


In 2019, alongside our counterparts throughout Europe, the ASAI will engage in further proactive monitoring of online and digital activity, as we strive to look to protect consumers and their needs.


The ASAI is committed to protecting consumers in relation to advertising – across all mediums – and our approach is to work with all advertisers to ultimately ensure that all marketing communications are legal, truthful, decent and honest.”


To facilitate this, it is worth highlighting that the ASAI also provide a free and confidential copy advice service to advertisers, including influencers, agencies and media members to help them create responsible ads, and we would encourage all to use this service.”


Professor Bairbre Redmond, Independent Head of the Complaints Committee of the ASAI, says:

“Over the past few years, the Complaints Committee, comprised of independent and industry members, has dealt with a broad range of complaints. The Complaints Committee has also spent considerable time highlighting awareness in relation to advertising best practice within the advertising industry, ensuring all relevant parties are equipped with the knowledge and resources to correctly identify commercial marketing content across their platforms.”


A list of complaints which have been found to be in breach of the ASAI Code are available here.


The ASAI conducts ongoing monitoring of advertising across all media and since 2007, has examined over 27,000 advertisements, with an overall compliance rate of 98 per cent. The ASAI Monitoring Service monitors compliance with the Complaints Committee’s adjudications.

Media members are reminded that advertisements found to be in breach of the Code cannot be accepted for publication.


Or follow the ASAI on Twitter @THE_ASAI




For further information, please contact:

Breda Brown / Catherine Quinn 

Unique Media

Tel: 01 5225200 / 086 863 2182 (CQ)


Editorial Notes:


The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland is financed by the advertising industry and committed, in the public interest, to promoting the highest standards of marketing communications that is advertising, promotional marketing and direct marketing. The objective is to ensure that all commercial marketing communications are ‘legal, decent, honest and truthful’.


Members of the ASAI are required to abide by the Code and not to publish an advertisement or conduct a promotion which contravenes Code rules. The Code covers commercial marketing communications and sales promotions in all media in Ireland including digital (online banners, websites and social platforms), print, outdoor, radio, TV, leaflets/brochures, and direct marketing.


Further information on advertising self-regulation, the ASAI and the operation

of the system is available at