Complaints against ads up 14% in half year period in FY23: ASCI report

Education continued to be the most violative sector for the period from April to September 2022.

Mumbai: The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) released its half-yearly complaints report, which consists of data from April to September 2022.

During the period, it processed 3,340 complaints against 2,764 advertisements that were in potential violation of the ASCI code. About 55 per cent of these ads were spotted across the digital domain, followed by 39 per cent in print and five per cent on television.

As compared to 2021-22, ASCI saw a 14 per cent rise in the number of complaints while witnessing a 35 per cent increase in the number of ads processed. Education remained the most violative sector, with 27 per cent of the complaints related to it; 22 per cent belonged to the classical education category, while five per cent were from the ed tech sector.

These were followed by personal care (14 per cent), food & beverages (13 per cent), healthcare (13 per cent) and gaming (4 per cent). ASCI’s surveillance remains strong, picking up 65 per cent of the ads processed suo motu.

98 per cent of consumers’ complaints were received by the artificial-intelligence-based complaints management system TARA. The introduction of TARA has given consumers a comprehensive, hassle-free redressal process. About 16 per cent of the total complaints recorded were from consumers, followed by 15 per cent from the government, while intra-industry complaints comprised three per cent. Of the 2,764 potentially objectionable ads processed, 32 per cent were not contested by the advertisers, 59 per cent were found to be in violation of the ASCI code, and eight per cent were found not to be violating the code.

Speaking about the survey, ASCI CEO and secretary general Manisha Kapoor said: "Looking at the rapid growth of digital advertising, we have invested heavily in ad-surveillance technology. We will continue to upgrade and streamline our processes to provide a more responsive platform to all stakeholders, including consumers, brands, and government bodies. In our constant pursuit of transparency, we have released a comprehensive report about the kinds of complaints and outcomes that ASCI has looked into during the first six months of the financial year."

Of the total complaints received by ASCI, 28 per cent of the violations were by influencers. Of the 781 complaints processed against influencers, 34 per cent were from the personal care category, followed by food and beverage at 17 per cent, and virtual digital assets at 10 per cent.

As part of the report, ASCI also published a list of cases handled as well as non-compliant influencers and brands.

Check the full report here:

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