Feeds

ASA to take over Facebook, Twitter regulation

Remit to include social media

Security for virtualized datacentres

Advertising regulator the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will take over the regulation of companies' social networking pages by the end of the year, according to advertising industry proposals.

The ASA hopes that the move will plug a regulatory gap that has resulted in two thirds of the complaints it receives relating to activity over which it has no authority.

Trade body the Advertising Association has recommended that the ASA regulate companies' activity on sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

"This landmark move for advertising self-regulation seeks to address societal concerns and will increase protection for consumers and children," said an Advertising Association statement. "The recommendations, if accepted, will bring companies’ marketing communications on their own websites, and other non-paid for space online, such as brand activity on social networking sites, within scope of the CAP Code."

The CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) Code is the basis of the ASA's regulation. The ASA has welcomed the move.

"Currently, the ASA’s online remit covers paid-for marketing communications such as pop-up and banner ads, paid-search and viral ads," said an ASA statement. "However, nearly two thirds of the complaints that we receive about online marketing activity are not presently covered by the Code. The proposed extension of our remit will plug this regulatory gap, ensuring that consumers enjoy the same level of protection on websites as they do in paid-for space."

"This is a direct and sensible response to people’s concerns about the protection of consumers and children online," said ASA chairman Lord Smith of Finsbury. "We know from our active monitoring work that where the Code applies, there is very high compliance with the rules and ASA decisions. This … is another example of the self-regulatory system responding to social and technological changes."

The ASA currently regulates adverts on websites and other forms of paid-for marketing. These include viral adverts, games that act as adverts, paid-for search listings and spots on price comparison services, and adverts in games. These recommendations will extend their influence to cover the overall content of companies' social networking sites, which is material companies usually host themselves rather than pay other companies to publish.

The Advertising Association said that the changes could take effect by the end of the year.

"It is anticipated that the extended remit will come into force during the third quarter of 2010, once formally ratified by CAP and the ASA, and after appropriate consultation," said the Advertising Association statement.

"We welcome the complex work undertaken by industry to finalise recommendations that cover three key principles - a newly defined online remit, effective enforcement measures and a funding mechanism," said CAP chairman Andrew Brown. "CAP will now consider all the implications and practicalities of the recommendations in consultation with the appropriate stakeholders, with the ultimate aim of bringing the new remit into effect as soon as possible."

Copyright © 2010, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.