Legal Update

E-commerce – Advertising – Advertising Standards Authority – Online Advertising – Comparative Advertising – Misleading Advertising – Misleading and Comparative Advertising Directive


Since 1 March 2011, the Advertising Standards Authority’s (“ASA”) remit has been extended to allow the ASA to regulate marketing claims made by businesses on their websites and on other non-paid sites such as facebook or twitter.


Current position


The extension to the ASA’s remit means that the ASA is now able to regulate all advertising and marketing communications placed on websites operating from the UK and in other non-paid-for space online (so long as the online space is directly connected with the supply or transfer of goods and/or services).


This therefore covers any advertisements of businesses for goods and/or services that are:-


§  Placed on websites;


§  Placed on webpages within social networking sites over which they have control/access; and


§  Advertised by paid-for search engine advertisements that link to the business’es websites (e.g. Google Adwords).


Some of the ASA’s new sanctions include the right to remove any paid-for search advertisements, such as Google AdWord advertisements. 


 If you require advice on exhaustion of rights or trade mark infringement, trademarks, please contact us at


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© RT COOPERS, 2011. This Briefing Note does not provide a comprehensive or complete statement of the law relating to the issues discussed nor does it constitute legal advice. It is intended only to highlight general issues. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in relation to particular


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