The Advertising Standards Council of India (“ASCI”) issued a new set of guidelines on July 20, 2023, concerning advertisements related to charitable causes. The primary objective of these guidelines is to strike a balance between facilitating the efforts of charitable organizations while safeguarding the interests of consumers.
In the preamble of the guidelines, ASCI acknowledges that charitable organizations are driven to maximize their fundraising potential, but it emphasizes the importance of exercising caution to avoid misleading or distressing consumers during their promotional activities. It is noted that in recent years, charitable organizations, especially crowdfunding platforms, have been actively utilizing digital media to reach potential donors and seek funds for their beneficiaries. While this approach has proven effective, there have been concerns about certain advertisements that might inadvertently cause distress to consumers, particularly due to the use of graphic images.
Below are the key points outlined in the guidelines:
As stated in the preamble, these guidelines are pursuant to Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 of the ASCI Code.
It's important to note that the ASCI Code is not a legally binding document, but it serves as a self-regulatory mechanism for the advertising industry in India. Advertisers are encouraged to adhere to these principles to maintain ethical standards and build trust with consumers.
Please find a copy of the guidelines, here.
This update has been contributed by Namitha Mathews (Partner) and Anukriti Goswami (Associate).
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