Regulatory and compliance

Marketinglaw Update | October 2020

Published on 27th Oct 2020

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of Marketinglaw.

I hope you, your teams and families are well.

This month's edition

We are back with an array of updates written by the contributing team throughout the summer break. The articles include: the Competition and Markets Authority's latest report on online platforms and digital markets, a look at lockdown advertising trends, the government's new consultation on cryptocurrency promotions, and an insight into what can happen when influencer promotions go wrong.

Other updates

Here are some other updates in the advertising and marketing world that have piqued my interest:

  • The Advertising Standards Agency has released guidance on the depiction of Covid-19 safety measures (such as social distancing and face coverings) in advertising.
  • The Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2020 come into force on 1 November 2020 (with the video-sharing platform aspects taking effect on 1 April 2021). As you may recall from previous letters, this brings in ad rules for video-sharing platform services and updates the alcohol ad rules for on-demand programme services.
  • High in fat salt and/or sugar watershed (HFSS) ban. The discussions about banning the advertising for HFSS food and beverages continue in the UK with a potential for all ads of this nature to be banned until after 9pm on television and online. A complete ban is also being discussed. We will update you when more information is available.
  • The Information Commissioner's Office's Direct Marketing Code of Practice has been delayed until mid-2021. The reason for the delay is unclear, but you may recall that some aspects were particularly contentious and difficult to work through. Hopefully, we will see a revised draft soon.
  • The legislative process for the EU's proposed Digital Services Act is underway and there are an array of proposals relating to advertising. At this early stage, based on the principles of "transparency by design" and "transparency by default", the proposals include mandatory opt-in requirements, disclosure of advertiser or funder, transparency for consumers in respect of ad profiling and accountability and fairness. This is certainly a piece of digital regulation to watch out for!


Starting next month, we will be running a series of articles that will be a refresh on some advertising and marketing law basics. If you have any topics in mind, please feel free to let me know.

As always, if you have questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.

Latest News

SPARTOO: first sanction of €250 000 and injunction to comply with GDPR by the CNIL as lead supervisory authority: The CNIL fines Spartoo 250 000 euros with an injunction to comply with GDPR obligations within three months, subject to a penalty payment of 250 euros per day of delay. Claire Bouchenard and Léa Puigmal report.
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Online platforms – will a new regulator be able to increase competition: The CMA published its final report on its online platforms and digital advertising market study and recommends a new regulator be established to regulate platforms in its aim to support greater competition and better value for consumers and businesses.
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Lockdown Advertising Trends: The ASA tracks the complaint cases received during the peak of the Covid-19 health crisis to understand if and how consumer concerns have changed. Verity Raeside reports.
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Everyone loves privacy – not just celebrities: The ASA published a guide on the privacy rules on how advertising may features celebrities and public persons.
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Government launches consultation on plans to bring the promotion of certain cryptoassets within the scope of financial promotions regulation: Government consults on proposals to bring certain types of unregulated cryptoassets within the scope of the financial promotions regime.
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New rules on advertising on 'media platforms' and video-sharing platform services in Germany: In Germany, the New State Treaty on Media will enter into force at the end of 2020. The new law will introduce new regulations on advertising. Martin Soppe and Arne Neubauer report.
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ICO Issues Fine to Pension Cold Caller: The ICO has fined CPS Advisory Limited £130,000 for breaching laws that prevent cold calling about pensions. Oliver Dawson reports.
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Here's looking at you, kid: CAP reflects on children's recognition of online advertising: CAP reports on the outcome of its review of current ASA guidance concerning children's recognition of online advertising. Charlotte Groom reports.
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Won’t somebody please think of the children!? The ASA has published its findings on the number of advertisers breaking ad rules by targeting young audiences. TK Spiff reports.
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CAP & BCAP consulting on new rules for 'cosmetic interventions': CAP and BCAP consulting on stopping cosmetic surgery at being targeted at under 18s. Katrina Anderson reports.
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A Bad Influence – when influencer promotions go wrong: Molly-May Hague (Love Island) provides a timely reminder of how influencer promotions should not be run, reports Will Gill.
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Quorn and Carbon: The ASA has ruled on whether claims that the product could help reduce their carbon footprint and had a beneficial effect on climate change were misleading and could be substantiated. Jamilia Sooh reports.
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* This article is current as of the date of its publication and does not necessarily reflect the present state of the law or relevant regulation.

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