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Vodafone accused of talkingtoofastinradioad

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Vodafone jabbered its terms and conditions at an unreasonable clip in a radio ad, according to a complaint upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority.

Many advertisers have trouble squeezing their verbalised small print into the end of a radio advert without boring customers, and Vodafone's latest promotion managed to squeeze the standard 30-word terms and conditions into an eight-second soundbite.

That's nothing compared to the world's fastest talker, who can manage 84 words in the same time, but compares well with a horse-racing commentator who will average out at about 40 words in such a tight bit of airspace.

But it's still too fast for one listener, who complained to the ASA that they couldn't follow the young lady's speech. Vodafone contended that the ASA rules make no specification about the speed at which terms and conditions are read out, and so they couldn't be found to be breaking the rules.

The ASA disagreed, and the ad won't be broadcast again in its current form. Most normal people speak at around 60 words a minute, apparently, but feel free to judge for yourself if 30 words in eight seconds is intelligible.®

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