Payday Loan Ads Could Be Banned From Popular Children’s Shows | Advertising

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Payday loan advertisements could face restrictions on TV advertising after the body responsible for setting advertising rules in the UK announced a public consultation on the issue.

The Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (Bcap) – the code-setting body for all television and radio advertising, has launched a consultation Assess whether the campaigns of payday loan companies such as Wonga should be subject to “scheduling restrictions” preventing them from airing shows when large numbers of children are watching them.

However, campaigners appear poised to face an uphill battle to secure a ban on TV ads on industry advertisers, officially known as high-cost short-term credit ads, with Bcap saying that collecting evidence at this day has not convinced him.

“Our call for papers found little solid evidence of advertising damage [from payday loan TV ads]”said Bcap.” We believe there are gaps and deficiencies in the database that we have seen. In particular, that the specific harm that the programming restriction could help prevent has not been Speak clearly. “

Bcap launched the consultation after receiving submissions from advocacy groups, including the Children’s Society.

“We are delighted that regulators appear to be listening to the many parents who share our concerns about the damaging impact of high interest loan ads on their children,” said Matthew Reed, CEO of the Children’s Society. “Ads with satsumas carols, Christmas presents and eye-catching jingles make borrowing money seem easy and fun to children, which increases the pressure on parents to take out low-interest loans. high interest. Children should learn about loans and debts from their school and family, not through irresponsible advertising of payday loans. “

Bcap said that while it was not convinced of the need to limit television commercials, the information provided was “invaluable” in identifying issues with the potential effect of payday loan advertising.

The organization said a review of television commercials on payday loans already shows that the ban on showing them in programs that have a high proportion of children aged 4 to 15 or 10 to 15 years old does not would not impact diffusers strongly.

“Their removal would not be likely to result in a significant loss of revenue for broadcasters,” Bcap said.

The Consumer Finance Association, which represents payday lenders making up 60% of Britain’s multibillion-pound-a-year industry, and Wonga have an explicit policy of not advertising on children’s television.

The existing advertising code already prohibits ads for payday loans from encouraging people under the age of 18 to take out a loan or harass others to do it for them. The rules also require that ads be socially responsible.

According to a study conducted by the media regulator Ofcom, children see an average of 1.3 payday loan advertisements on television per week, on about 17 hours of weekly television viewing.

According to Ofcom, payday loan ads accounted for a relatively small 0.6% of TV ads seen by children aged 4 to 15.

In November, the government asked Bcap to expand the scope of its review of the content of payday loan advertisements to examine a potential total ban before the watershed.

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