The International Council for Ad Self-Regulation, the European Advertising Standards Alliance, and CONARED issued a joint statement on responsible advertising during the COVID-19 health crisis.
Noting that they have seen "advertisements that undermine public health advice or exploit people’s anxieties," the organizations said that they condemn these practices and are taking action against them. They said that their members are "giving high priority to these claims and can refer non-compliant advertisers who refuse to amend or withdraw their advertisements, where appropriate, to the authorities for legal action."
The organizations also reminded marketers of some key principles to follow during this period:
- advertise responsibly;
- respect existing advertising laws and standards;
- be sensitive to people’s current increased susceptibility to health claims;
- make sure that all claims made are fully substantiated; and
- get advice when in doubt.
As the worldwide COVID-19 health crisis continues, this announcement makes clear that, in additional to government enforcement, we should expect to see stepped up self-regulatory enforcement as well.
"across the globe, we are also seeing advertisements that undermine public health advice or exploit people’s anxieties"