Every country has its own rules and regulations, which protect its citizens from misleading advertisements that eventually lead them to purchasing or subscribing to fake organizations in the name of acquiring goods and services. These regulations differ with countries in that every country has a different body that protects the citizens from fraud and by this the consumers are able to make informed decisions in the corporate world.
According to summaries of EU legislation, S. L.E (2008) misleading and comparative advertising; act 2006/114/EC of the European parliament and of the council of 12 December 2006 concerning misleading advertisements in the interest of consumers, competition and the general public lays down the terms and conditions under which comparative advertising is permitted. S. L. E (2008) elaborate further on comparative advertising, which is an advertising, which by implication identifies a competitor or goods or services offered by a competitor.
When advertising or marketing a product in Europe, one has to pay attention to comparative advertisements, which is only permitted if it is not misleading, compares goods that meets the needs of the consumers, compares one or more material and represents its features like price. It does not discredit trademarks or other distinguishing signs of a competitor. For products with designation of origin it should relate to the product with the same designation, does not create confusion in the market place between the competitors and the advertisers.
It does not take unfair advantage of the trademark or other distinguishing sign of a competitor and lastly it does not present goods and services as imitations or replicas of goods and services bearing a protected trademark or trade name (S. E. L, 2008). Failure to adhere to these rules and regulations the persons or organization bearing the misleading advertisements may be brought to court after an administrative judgement if a complaint is filed against a misleading advertisement. This may eventually lead to a withdrawal of the misleading advertisement or illicit comparative advertisements S.
E. L (2008). An advertisement can be considered dishonest or illegal if it distorts the consumers economic behavior which happens at two levels in unfair practices; misleading and aggressive marketing. This was passed by the European Union because these dishonest practices are against the set requirements of professional diligence S. E. L (2008). According to Advertisements Standards Authority, A. S. A (2009), advertisements in UK must go through the codes that have been set to deal with internet advertisements; control of Ads, Ads must be trustworthy, legal, decent and honest to the consumers.
This is made possible by the collaborative element of the A. S. A with other Media that help in taking surveys of any advertisements published by all the sectors. The codes used are aimed at making sure that the advertisements are substantiated before being published. If an advertisement is broadcasting oriented, it should pre-cleared before broadcasting and if non-broadcasting, Copy Advice Team(C. A. T) comes in to help or advise the advertisers to market their products that meet the Copy Advice Team’s code.
If the consumer still complains about a misleading advert even after it has been passed for publication by A. S. A, the marketer does not face much trouble than if he/she had not consulted Advertisement Standards Authority (A. S. A. , 2009). According to consumers Affairs (2009), The General Product Safety Directive, has two directives which is a system that fosters a general culture that all consumer products must be safe and integrates the role of European Standards otherwise non-harmonized products.
Producers and advertisers should inform the consumers of the risk associated with their products and must take measures to prevent such risks and be able to trace dangerous products. According to Mindbranch (2000), an industry challenge has given a specific procedure to be followed in marketing of pharmaceutical products through the patent protection and community patent. For one to market his/her products one must register them with the EU special bodies for recognition; this can be national, decentralized or centralized.
Other requirements include mutual recognition of EU generics, reference member state, practical aspects and guidance and electronic media for registration. One must also have good manufacturing practices standards, inspection procedure and performance standards. All these requirements are aimed at making sure that the products are safe for use by the consumers. According to A. S. A (2008) Advertising rules. ‘The Codes contain wide-ranging rules designed to ensure that advertising does not mislead, harm or offend.
Ads must also be socially responsible and prepared in line with the principles of fair competition. These broad principles apply regardless of the product being advertised. In addition, the Codes contain specific rules for certain products and marketing techniques. These include rules for alcoholic drinks, health and beauty claims, children, medicines, financial products, environmental claims, gambling, direct marketing and prize promotions. The ASA administers the rules in the spirit as well as the letter, making it almost impossible for advertisers to find loopholes or ‘get off on a technicality’.
This common sense approach takes into account the nature of the product being advertised, the media used, and the audience being targeted” (A. S. A, 2008). Reference List Advertising Standards Authority. (2008). The General Product Safety Directive. Retrieved 17 July, 2010, from http://europa. eu/legislation_summaries/consumers/consumer_information/l32010_en. htm Advertising Standards Authority. (2009). Advertising codes. Retrieved 17 July, 2010, from http://www. asa. org. uk/Regulation-Explained/The-Codes.
aspx Consumer Affairs. (2009). Control of ads. Retrieved 17 July, 2010, from http://www. asa. org. uk/Regulation-Explained/Control-of-ads. aspx Mindbranch. (2000). Pharmaceutical regulation in European: industry challenge. Retrieved 17 July, 2010, from http://www. mindbranch. com/listing/product/R410-75. html Summaries of EU Legislation. (2008). Misleading and Comparative Advertising. Retrieved 17 July, 2010, from http://ec. europa. eu/consumers/safety/prod_legis/index_en. htm