The ASA Turns to Wider Advertising Issues instead of Individual Complaints

UK regulator the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has changed its point of focus away from individual ad complaints to advising brands on broader issues such as health and protecting children.

In a move that will see the ASA taking a more pro-active stance, they will concentrate their resources on advising brands of the advertising codes and taking action when these are breached.

From now on less resource will be devoted to individual members of the public who make complaints about ads. In some cases the same stance will be taken toward brands who abuse the ASA's process of reporting competitors without justification. The aim of this tactic is to have more time to spend on high-priority issues where the ASA can "do more good"

Chief Executive of the ASA, Guy Parker, commented on the strategy change today: "There will be occasions when we are doing less on issues that people have complained to us about. In the main part that will be members of the public because they are 95% of our complainants. There will be occasions where we will not be providing the level of service we are providing at the moment."

He added: "Increasingly, I think, people want to vent. They want to shout about something, have that recorded and registered and then they are happy. At the moment, we are the service for those people. They ought to be the easy ones to downsize in terms of our regulatory response."

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