Warning! This website is currently undergoing major reconstruction. Please apply skepticism to any numbers you see, as many of them are just plain wrong!
Greenpeace NZ, Television
Greenpeace NZ, Television
DATE OF MEETING
26 February 2018
No Grounds to Proceed
Advertisement: The Greenpeace television advertisement warning of the danger of oil
exploration blasting on blue whales said in part; "Help push the government to stop the
reckless search for new oil. Text your name to 963. More oil drilling will increase the risk of
devastating spills and drive us closer to climate catastrophe. Help Greenpeace protect our
whales and stop oil exploration in New Zealand. Txt your name to 963 now!" The wording
at the bottom of the screen read "Text your name to 963, Texts wil be charged at your
standard network rate - Greenpeace."
The Chair ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Complainant, D Daglish, said: Greenpeace placed an ad asking people to txt a 4 digit
number to stop oil drilling as it affects whales. In the tiniest print that I had to place my face to
the TV screen to read...it said txts will be charged at your normal rate. Not even a $ figure
mentioned. The ad is misleading and the charges are misleading and the fine print is
The relevant provisions were Code of Ethics - Basic Principle 4, Rule 11, Rule 2.
The Chair noted the Complainant's concern the advertisement was misleading in its method
of informing viewers of the cost involved in texting support for the Advertiser's cause.
The Chair noted the Advertiser had confirmed that consumers who texted the advertised 963
number were charged the standard network rate for texts and this varied depending on the
network. The Chair said it would not be possible for the Advertiser to display a fixed cost on
the advertisement given the variation in network rates.
The Chair said the intention of the advocacy advertisement was a call to action to contact the
Advertiser and while acknowledging the Advertiser had used a smaller font size for the text
charge notification, she said it appeared on screen for 25 seconds and most viewers would
be aware that texts incurred a charge. Therefore, the Chair said the advertisement did not
meet the threshold to be considered misleading and had been prepared with a due sense of
social responsibility to consumers and to society.
Therefore, the Chair ruled the advertisement did not reach the threshold to breach Basic
Principle 4 or Rule 2 of the Code of Ethics.
Accordingly, the Chair ruled there were no ground for the complaint to proceed.
Chair's Ruling: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed
According to the procedures of the Advertising Standards Complaints Board, all
decisions are able to be appealed by any party to the complaint. Information on
our Appeal process is on our website http://www.asa.co.nz. Appeals must be made in
writing via email or letter within 14 days of receipt of this decision.