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Advertising Standards Canada Releases Ad Complaints Report - 2011 Year in Review

TORONTO, March 20, 2012 -- Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) today released its Ad Complaints Report - 2011 Year in Review. The Report provides information about consumers' complaints submitted to ASC in 2011 for review under the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards (Code).

Complaints Snapshot:
  • Consumers submitted 1,809 complaints about 1,153 advertisements – an increase of 51% over the previous year
  • ASC’s independent Standards Councils found 146 complaints, concerning 83 advertisements, contravened the Code
  • Retail advertising garnered the most complaints (252)
  • More complaints were submitted about allegedly inaccurate or misleading advertising than about advertising consumers found offensive or inappropriate.

"In today’s economic climate, consumers are most concerned about getting value for their money, good deals and low prices." stated Janet Feasby, Vice President, Standards. "It’s not surprising that retail advertising was our highest complaint category last year." noted Feasby.

The 2011 Ad Complaints Report, as well as case summaries of consumers’ complaints upheld by the Standards Councils are available on ASC’s website (adstandards.com).

Advertising Standards Canada is the national advertising industry self-regulatory body. ASC administers the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards, the principal instrument of advertising self-regulation in Canada, and accepts complaints from consumers about advertising. ASC’s members include leading Canadian advertisers, advertising agencies and media organizations.

For more information, contact:
Janet Feasby
Vice President, Standards
Tel: (416) 961-6311, ext. 243
janet.feasby@adstandards.com


FACT SHEET - Advertising Standards Canada

  • Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) is the national, not-for-profit, advertising industry self-regulatory body committed to ensuring the integrity and viability of advertising in Canada.
  • ASC’s members include leading Canadian advertisers, advertising agencies, media organizations, and suppliers to the advertising industry.
  • ASC administers the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards, the principal instrument of advertising self-regulation. The Code’s clauses help ensure that advertising is truthful, fair and accurate, and are used to evaluate consumers’ complaints about advertisements appearing in Canadian media.
    • ASC accepts and responds to written complaints from consumers who have a concern about an advertisement appearing in Canadian media.
    • Complaints can be submitted: online or, by letter (ASC, 175 Bloor Street East, South Tower, Suite 1801, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 3R8).
  • Complaints that raise potential issues under the Code are reviewed and adjudicated by independent, volunteer Standards Councils that include both industry and public representatives.
  • Summaries of upheld complaints are published in ASC’s online Ad Complaints Reports, at adstandards.com