...whether the "falsely representing oneself as a consumer" clause will put a stop to all those ads that feature actors pretending to be members of the public.
Nothing beats word of mouth for getting people to put their hand in their pockets. So it didn't take long for cheeky marketing departments to cotton on to the power of blogs and pose as consumers praising their own particular widget to the skies to help lift their top line. Sneaky, perhaps, but usually legal. Not for much …
As a completely independent person, I have to say that Phillip Carnell's article is the best article I have read on this topic, and indeed it is probably the best article I have read on a website. In fact it is the best piece of writing I have ever read, and I look forward to anything that Phillip Carnell does in the future, such as his forthcoming new book "The Spinach Wars: Malarkey, or Effective Way?", which will be published by HarperCollins in first quarter 2008 for a rrp of $12.95. I hope Phillip Carnell does a speaking tour, and also I would love to hear/see him on major media outlets, because Phillip Carnell has a lot to say and it is all worthwhile. The name itself, "Phillip Carnell", commands respect. If only The Register would commission more articles by Phillip Carnell, perhaps with photographs of the man. I have tattooed his name on my chest with a special knife. Phillip Carnell.
I choose Paris Hilton as my avatar, although I would much rather have an icon of Phillip Carnell.
It does seem to undermine the basis of 90% of advertising aimed at the general consumer. What we really need are EU standards for "great", "excellent" and "alluring" so individual excessive claims can be prosecuted. We all have to learn to ignore the hyperbole from all kinds of brand fanboys, not just those with a commercial interest.
I'm still curious about rainbows and what they taste like.
And snackfood adverts aimed at children should all carry a health warning about washing your hands before eating with your fingers.
The E.U. and most of its member countries have always been much more pro-consumer than North America. I can only hope that this law has a whole bunch of useful side effects, much like the one mentioned by Mr. Coward above.
Such an attempt for fair advertising wouldn't ever be considered in Canada or the USA, as it's the corporations that run things there, not the voting public. The corporations buy the election for the political party of their choice, which when elected turns around and gives the corporations what they want, under threat of not getting money for the next election.
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