Feeds

Plusnet's 'Everyone's a winner' claim is a plus-sized whopper

Watchdog slaps ISP for Del Boy-like tactics

Boost IT visibility and business value

BT-owned ISP Plusnet misled would-be customers by boasting in a telly ad that its broadband service was available to "everyone", says a watchdog.

And the blurb wrongly gave the impression that all of its products were part of a half-price sale.

The Advertising Standards Authority ruled the Plusnet ad in question, which stated: "Everyone's a winner with the PlusNet broadband half price sale. All broadband's [sic*] half off", must not appear again in its current form.

A number of TV viewers successfully challenged the ad's claims on two points. The first related to the use of the word "everyone" and the second to the implication that the 50 per cent cut applied to all price tags across all of PlusNet's broadband packages.

Sheffield-based PlusNet, which was bought by BT in 2006 and is run as a separate business, failed to convince the ads regulator that its use of the phrase "everyone's a winner" was simply "puffery" and of its argument that people would not be misled even if they had interpreted the ad literally. Broadband connectivity in Blighty has not yet reached 100 per cent of the population, which nixes the word "everyone" in the ISP's ad.

As for the claim that "all broadband's [sic*] half off", PlusNet said it was clear that the promotion was intended solely for those customers who rented a phone line along with a broadband connection from the company.

The ISP added that a price tag at the bottom of the ad which was displayed throughout the duration of the voice-over - which stated "with £13.99 monthly line rental" - had made this explicit.

On those two points the ASA disagreed. The watchdog added: "We told PlusNet to ensure significant conditions of promotions were clear in future and that qualifications accurately reflected the availability of such promotions."

A third gripe that questioned whether the on-screen text was legible was not upheld by the watchdog.

The ASA's full decision can be viewed here. ®

* That's the ASA, in its ruling, flagging up Plusnet's "broadband's" as sic erratum scriptum, presumably in case anyone thought the clumsy grammar was the work of the watchdog.

Seven Steps to Software Security

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Bring back error correction, say Danish 'net boffins
We don't need no steenkin' TCP/IP retransmission and the congestion it causes
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
What FTC lawsuit? T-Mobile US touts 10GB, $100 family-of-4 plan
Folks 'could use that money for more important things' says CEO Legere
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.