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Home Rulings IDEALDIRECT / A THEUNISSEN / 2017-6492F


Mr Theunissen lodged a consumer complaint against the respondent’s e-mail received. 

The e-mail advertisement states, inter alia, "Indoor HD Wireless Network IP Alarm Camera with Mobile Viewing for R499 including Delivery”. 


The Complainant submitted that the camera is not an HD camera, but a VGA camera as it is apparent from the product specifications. This means that the camera resolution and quality is much lower than one expects from an HD camera, meaning that the advertisement is misleading.

Relevant Clause of the Code of Advertising Practice

In light of the complaint Clause 4.2.1 of Section II (Misleading claims) was taken into consideration.


The Respondent was provided with a copy of the complaint and official ASA correspondence requesting a response. However, despite repeated attempts to obtain a response, no response was received. As a consequence, the Directorate had no option but to rule on the matter based on the information it hand.

ASA Directorate Ruling

The ASA Directorate considered the relevant documentation submitted by the complainant. The absence of any response meant that the Directorate had nothing before it to contradict what the complainant submitted.

Clause 4.2.1 of Section II states that advertisements should not contain any statement or visual presentation which, directly or by implication, omission, ambiguity, inaccuracy, exaggerated claim or otherwise, is likely to mislead the consumer.

The complainant submitted that the respondent’s advertised camera is not HD but rather a VGA camera, with inferior resolution quality. The Respondent has not disputed this, and has not submitted anything to suggest that this is not the case, or to argue that the complainant is misguided. As such, the ASA has nothing before it to contradict the complainant’s argument or to show that the advertisement is accurate.

By virtue of this, the advertisement appears to be misleading and in contravention of Clause 4.2.1 of Section II of the Code.

In light of the above finding, the respondent is required to:
  • Withdraw the advertisement in its current format;
  • The process to withdraw the advertisement must be actioned with immediate effect on receipt of ruling;
  • The withdrawal of the advertisement must be completed within the deadlines stipulated by Clause 15.3 of the Procedural Guide; and
  • The advertisement may not be used again in its current format.
In addition, given that respondent elected not to respond and an adverse ruling has been made, the Directorate will issue an Ad-Alert to its members informing them of the above decision, and requesting them not to accept the advertisement in question.

The complaint is upheld.

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