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Burger King's claim that its Satisfries have 30% less fat doesn't cut it

The FAI, Eircom and Volkswagen were also hit with complaints.

IRELAND’S ADVERTISING WATCHDOG has upheld complaints against Eircom, Volkswagen, the FAI and Burger King.

The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland (ASAI) today announced the results of its latest meeting, where eight complaints were upheld.

Three of the complaints were upheld against the online retailer BVG Airflo Group.

All three related to Groupon deals that advertised various weight-loss supplements. All three decisions said that the ads could be construed as offering weight-loss options but that these claims could not be substantiated by the advertisers.

Therapie Clinics also had a complaint upheld against a Chai tea ad that claimed it could help users lose 10 pounds in a week.


Eircoms Offices Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

A leaflet proclaiming to the people of Celbridge and Blackrock that Eircom’s efibre broadband “is here” was also the subject of a complaint.

Two complainants, one from each area mentioned, considered the advertising to be misleading as when they enquired about signing up to the package they were informed that eFibre was not yet available in their locality. One complainant was informed that while his cabinet was set up for the service it would take a few months before it could be installed.

The ASAI that while the advertisers had made reference to the fact that the service was “subject to availability” in the footnote, they considered that this was a significant factor which should have been referenced in the main copy so that the absolute headline claim was sufficiently qualified.

They said that the ad should not be allowed run again.


9/11/2013 Martin O Neill New Manager Conferences Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

The FAI had to amend an ad that promised 15% off in the FAI store for season ticket holders.

A complaint was made by a customer who was told the discount would not apply on sale items.

The ASAI said that the FAI should not have offered the discount when it was not yet available, but noted that this has been amended.

Burger King

Horse Meat Burgers Controversies Source: Sam Boal/Photocall Ireland

The fast food chain’s Satisfries claimed to have 30% less fat that a leading competitor, but a complainant was unhappy that the competitor wasn’t named.

The ASAI said that the use of a small font wasn’t sufficient on the ad.

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“While the Code did not specify a minimum font size, it did require that they be of sufficient size and prominence and easily legible. The Committee were of the opinion that even when standing in front of the advertising the footnote proved difficult for the normally sighted reader.”


Camac Valley Campsites Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

A radio commercial that featured a woman crying because her new Toyota Auris “was just not a (Volkswagen) Golf” was also stopped from running again.

Toyota Ireland complained, saying that “it was hardly credible that a car buyer would give back a brand new Toyota that they have just purchased, in favour of an older, second hand VW Golf” and that Volkswagen were trying to portray owning a Toyota as a negative experience.

Volkswagen argued that car buyers frequently experience “cognitive dissonance” after their purchase.

The ASAI said that they considered “that the reference to a competitor’s product was accompanied by the depiction of someone clearly distressed at having bought the product and by the reference to “we all make mistakes”.

“Whilst noting the comments in relation to ‘cognitive dissonance’, the committee considered that the advertisement had unfairly attacked and discredited the competitor product.”

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