Who: : The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA)
Where: United Kingdom
When: 17 July 2020
Law stated as at: 20 August 2020
The ASA has published a guide on privacy rules for marketers in relation to when and how they may feature celebrities, public persons and private identifiable property in advertisements. The guide makes specific reference to sections 6 (Privacy) and 10 (Use of data for marketing) of the CAP Code which should always be taken into consideration prior to including public persons or data of individuals in advertising.
The ASA guide’s main points for marketers are in relation to:
- Royal family members – members are only to be mentioned or shown in ads in certain circumstances such as where the marketer:
(i) has obtained prior permission;
(ii) if the reference is incidental and not connected to the product being advertised; or
(iii) if the product such as a film or book is about the relevant family member.
- Members of the public or those with a public profile or indefinable private property – marketers are to seek prior permission in any event, but notes that permission is needed where the ad refers to the individual in an offensive or adverse way.
- The ASA highlighted that without consent, the individual may have a legal claim against the ad if they do not wish to be associated with a product or where their private property has been identified (such as by showing the road name or including a car’s number plate).
- The ASA notes, however, that the potential exemption to this rule is where a person with a public profile has publicly stated their position or views, provided that the ad does not misrepresent their views.
Why this matters:
The ASA’s guide on the privacy rules for marketers on how to feature celebrities, public persons or private property is not new, however, it highlights that the ASA is paying attention to the adherence to the UK’s privacy rules in advertising. The guide acts as a reminder to the industry and to encourage marketers to obtain prior permissions before including individuals and their details in advertising.