Kenya: Advertising standards committee rules that Orange Ad. against Safaricom be withdrawn

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The controversial Do You Know advert which ASC has ruled be withdrawn and reworded.

CIO East Africa: The Advertising Standards Committee (ASC) has ruled that a controversial advert run by Orange from earlier this year be withdrawn from the mediums on which it has been running.

In its ruling, the ASC states that the commercial which has been running on all platforms – print; online and broadcast – is misleading as it failed to mention that the other network – in this case Safaricom – had a price point of Kshs 2 during off-peak hours.

The case was lodged at the ASC by Scanad on behalf of Safaricom on January 28 this year regarding the “Do You Know” campaign which is part of the Tujuane tariff while Orange was represented by Ad Agency, Acess Leo Burnett and Annette J Martyres.

“The ad was disparaging because it suggested that Safaricom was the more expensive network. The claim is misleading and should be withdrawn from the mediums it is run on or edited in the manner stated thereafter,” states the ASC ruling which has been jointly signed by all committee members.

The ASC committee is comprised of Joe Otin as chair; Peter Wanjama as vice chair while members include Moses Kemibaro; Shanna Mahihu; Ken Kariuki; Wangari Murugu and Tony Gathecha.

“This claim is misleading and should be withdrawn from the mediums it is run or edited in the manner stated hereafter. The ad should be reworded to make it clear that it is peak time comparison as opposed to a general comparison with an asterisk in small text to qualify the same,” states the ASC in its ruling.

ASC further adds that in future, parties should “hold and make available to consumers evidence to support comparative claims to enable the public to understand how the comparison was made.

The ASC further ruled that because Access Leo has initiated negotiations in good faith and further amended the ad in some mediums following the complaint, each party should bear own costs for the case.

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