Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Misleading Ads Banned in UK

L'Oreal
Last week I wrote about the new law in Israel banning the employment of models that don't meet certain weight requirements. Part of the law also requires a disclaimer on advertisements that use digitally altered images of models.

Since that post, I learned of a law proposed in Arizona's House of Representatives that would require "advertisers to add a disclaimer on digitally altered photos. The proposed legislation is modeled after laws in Britain, where the Advertising Standards Authority monitors companies for egregious acts of Photoshopping. It also has the power to ban ads." (Source: a March 9, 2012 article from CNN.com.)

Articles discussing Great Britain's actions against misleading ads can be found in Time Magazine and Reuters.com. Recently the government banned an advertisement by Loreal featuring Rachel Weisz and one by Lancome featuring Julia Roberts. The complaint? The ads are unrealistic, misleading and exaggerate the performance of the beauty products.

The UK's Advertising Standards Authority has its work cut out for them, analyzing which advertisements have been significantly altered - and which have not. The group's work aims to protect the consumer, so we are all better informed about products before we buy. But there is a another benefit to these laws: making a statement against the unrealistic and oversexed portrayal of women in the media. Especially for the sake of our young girls - and boys - I hope the law in Arizona gets passed, and that other states take action, too.

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