The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has concluded that a press advert from telecommunications firm Everything Everywhere was misleading, it was announced today.
Nine complaints were lodged regarding a series of online, press and poster advertisements, seen on July 20th 2011, that claimed to offer ‘Truly Unlimited’ internet connections as part of T-Mobile’s pay monthly price plan.
Complainants pointed out that the tagline was misleading as the ad went on to highlight restrictions to the service, including very small print which read: “’Truly unlimited’ means use as many MG/GB as you like, but you can’t use your phone as a modem (tethering), for peer to peer file sharing or for making internet phone calls”.
In response to the comments, Everything Everywhere, a firm created last year through the merger of Orange UK and T-Mobile UK, claimed that no extra charges were incurred for use of a speedy connection and that the fair use policy (FUP) had been adhered to.
Everything Everywhere also said that it had highlighted the exclusions in the small print for clarity, and felt that these exclusions were fair and reasonable.
The ASA commented: “Although we noted that the plan was not subject to a FUP and that the three exceptions/restrictions were set out in the ads’ small print, we considered that, to all intents and purposes, where an ad claimed that a plan was “Truly Unlimited”, exclusions would be contrary to a consumer’s expectations.
“We therefore considered that the information in the small print contradicted the headline claim “Truly Unlimited”.”
This adjudication follows news that fellow mobile phone retailer Phones 4 U faces a ban of its new television advertising campaign, after the ASA received 185 complaints about the promotion following its launch last week.
Members of the public have suggested that the ad, which features a young girl of ghoulish appearance along with the tagline “Missing our Deals will Haunt You”, was too adult in nature
Complainants pointed out that the ad was shown too early and was unsuitable for children, while hundreds have taken to social networking sites objecting to the content.
The ASA is expected to assess the complaints before deciding whether to launch an investigation.