It's time for advertisers of automotive vehicles and food and beverages to be more careful as the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), the apex self regulatory body that controls the content of advertisements in the country, has introduced certain additions to its code on advertising of automotive vehicles and food and beverages.
The recent code on automotive vehicles' advertising promotes safe practices such as wearing of helmets, fastening of seatbelts and not using mobile phones while driving. The recently introduced guidelines prohibit portraying of traffic rules violations in any manner, showing reckless speed or manoeuvres that could harm the driver, passengers or the general public. Also, the code discourages showing stunts or actions without a readable cautionary message on the potential dangers of the stunt.
It specifies that messages in advertising to children must accurately portray the products in a way that is in keeping with children's ability to understand. The code also stresses on the importance of parental care and guidance in making the right choices for their children.
Further, the food and beverage code prohibits advertisements and promotions from portraying over consumption in any way. It prohibits visual presentation of food and beverage to be any different from its actual material characteristics.
Detailing on the recent move, Alan Colaco, secretary general, ASCI, says, "The additions to the ASCI advertising code is in line with the swift changes happening in the Indian advertising and marketing world. ASCI realises that cut throat competition among products and the need for uniqueness can sometimes lead to senseless exaggeration and depiction of unsafe practices. The recent set of guidelines for automotive vehicles and food and beverages seeks to make advertising content safer and healthier for the general public."