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ASC’s Annual General Meeting & Breakfast Program held on May 2, 2013

ASC’s Annual General Meeting and Breakfast Program took place on Wednesday, May 2, 2013 at the Intercontinental Hotel in Toronto. Following the AGM, keynote speaker, Tony Pigott, Global CEO, JWT Ethos, delivered a thought-provoking address entitled The Power of Brands to Make a Better World. Pigott focused on the measurable rise in consumer and employee expectations of business leadership around the world to inspire and contribute positively to social change. In what he called "a new era of brand communication and engagement", Pigott offered insights into a range of initiatives whereby leading global brands are using their voice to engage consumers and to move forward on critical social issues. Information was also provided about the BrandAid project, an advertising industry initiative to support artisan micro-enterprises in developing economies. Following the speech, John Coyne, ASC’s Immediate Past Chair, joined the stage to discuss the findings with Pigott and take questions from the floor.

Advertising Standards Canada Announces 2013/2014 Board of Directors

Advertising Standards Canada is pleased to announce that Patrick Dickinson has been elected Chair of the Board for the coming year. The 2013/2014 Board of Directors includes the following members:


Patrick Dickinson
Hudson’s Bay Company

Sandy MacLeod
(Vice Chair)
Toronto Star

Nancy Marcus
Kruger Products L.P.

John Coyne
(Immediate Past Chair)
Unilever Canada Inc.

Ron Lund
Association of Canadian Advertisers Inc.

Jani Yates
Institute of Communication Agencies

Linda Nagel
(President and CEO)
Advertising Standards Canada


Christina Bisanz
Consumers Council of Canada

Dom Caruso
Leo Burnett Canada

Nicolas Faucher
TC Media

Marilyn King
Pattison Outdoor Advertising

Bev Kirshenblatt

Marie-Josée Lamothe
L’Oréal Canada Inc.

Gary Maavara
Corus Entertainment Inc.

Brett Marchand

Carol J. Ritter
Procter & Gamble Inc.

Kevin Skinner
Bayer Inc.

Dominique Villeneuve
Association of Quebec Advertising Agencies

ASC Publishes 2012/2013 Annual Report

2013 annual report

ASC’s 2012/2013 Annual Report is now available. The report highlights ASC’s initiatives over the past 12 months and features individuals who help make that happen: our volunteers, members, Board of Directors and staff.

Note to ASC Official Representatives

The 2012 audited Financial Statement of the Corporation is now available. ASC Official Representatives may request a copy by contacting Jennifer.finjan@adstandards.com

Report on Consumer’s Complaints

ASC released its Ad Complaints Report – 2012 Year in Review. The Report provides insight into consumers’ complaints submitted to ASC during 2012 for review under the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards. Highlights from the 2012 Ad Complaints Report include:

  • Consumers submitted 1,310 complaints about 1,057 advertisements – a 28% decrease from the previous year
  • ASC’s independent Standards Councils found 116 complaints, concerning 87 advertisements, contravened the Code
  • Advertising on television generated the highest number of the complaints (559) of any medium, followed by advertising on the Internet (280)
  • Retail category of advertising garnered the most complaints (247)

The 2012 Ad Complaints Report, as well as the Q1 case summaries of consumers’ complaints upheld by the Standards Councils are both available online.

ASC regularly reports on complaints that have been upheld by Councils. ASC’s Ad Complaints Database, is searchable by timeframe, product/advertiser category, media type, Code clause(s) and key word.

ASC Introduces Simplified Consumer Complaint Procedure for Clauses 1 & 3

Many consumer complaints received under Clause 1 (Accuracy and Clarity) and Clause 3 (Price Claims) have involved simple non-controversial issues, such as a price error in a flyer that are immediately corrected by the advertiser upon learning of the complaint from ASC. To simplify and expedite the complaints process, in 2012 ASC’s Board of Directors approved a streamlined procedure for handling such complaints. Launched this year, this simplified procedure provides ASC with the discretion to administratively resolve this type of complaint without forwarding to the Standards Council, when prompt corrective action is taken by the advertiser. These cases are now reported as "Administratively Resolved Cases."

ASC Awards Shane Gunter with the 2013 Robert E. Oliver Scholarship

The 2013 Robert E. Oliver Scholarship recipient is Shane Gunter, a third-year undergraduate student enrolled in the Bachelor of Business Administration program at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton. In addition to Shane’s excellent academic record, he is an outstanding contributor to his community volunteering his time to a range of charitable organizations.

Commemorating Robert E. Oliver, an architect of advertising self-regulation in Canada and our organization’s first president, ASC awards this scholarship annually to recognize academic excellence and outstanding citizenship of a marketing and advertising student.

Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) is the national not-for-profit advertising industry self-regulatory body committed to creating and maintaining community confidence in advertising. ASC administers the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards, the principal instrument of advertising self-regulation in Canada, and a national mechanism for accepting and responding to consumers’ complaints about advertising. ASC members include leading advertisers, advertising agencies, media organizations and suppliers to the advertising industry.