This week I was asked by Campaign, a leading marketing trade publisher, as to whether the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) should regulate political advertising.
As regular readers will know, much to my chagrin, political advertising remains completely unregulated in the UK. Political campaigns can say or claim anything they want without fear of legal or financial reprimand.
Below is my 100 word response and you can read the thoughts of other members of the advertising industry here:
Political advertising needs regulating.
More parties and groups, are making more ads, more quickly.
But widespread visibility of those ads has decreased, along with other safeguards against the spread of disinformation.
Regulation would inevitably generate controversy.
Requiring the ASA to repeatedly weather such storms risks compromising their good reputation for regulating commercial advertising.
Both the Election Committee of Ofcom and the Electoral Commission are better placed.
A system for pre-clearance of factual claims and transparency around the universe of messaging being used by parties are two measures that would help restore trust in political campaigns.