ASA announces new approach to broadband price claims

The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has announced that it will be toughening its approach to advertising fixed broadband price claims from October this year. It is hoped the new approach will avoid misleading consumers and will ensure they receive information they need to make well-informed choices.

The new approach comes as a result of research conducted by the ASA and Ofcom which has found that the current approach is likely to mislead and confuse consumers about the price of broadband. Typically the price is broken down into various elements (including broadband, line rental, introductory offer, contract length and one-off costs), with some elements given greater prominence than others.

The ASA is now recommending that, in order to stay within advertising rules when the new approach is implemented, broadband price claims and advertisements should:
• Not separate out line rental but instead show all-inclusive up-front and monthly costs;
• Give greater prominence to the contract length and any post-discount pricing; and
• Give greater prominence to up-front costs.

The new approach will come into force on 31 October 2016. The ASA’s full announcement can be found on its website

For more information on any of the issues raised, please contact a member of the commercial team at Stevens & Bolton.

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