Saturday, 27 February 2010
*Nexus Magazine - not exactly averse to promoting woo
The February 2010 issue of Nexus Magazine has provided rich pickings for this vexatious complainant, so my last complaint features an advert placed by... Nexus Magazine themselves!
UPDATE, 20 May: ASA reports "[The advertiser] has given us their written assurance that, going forward, the ad (and the claims therein) will not appear again."
Pinhole glasses are available everywhere, but unfortunately, there isn't much evidence that they are beneficial for anyone.
I just the ASA will agree.
"I write to complain about an advert published in Nexus Magazine, Vol. 17, No. 2 (February-March 2010).
The advert, for Nexus Magazine themselves, is entitled "Pinhole Glasses".
I have submitted a scan of the advert. I can provide an original copy of the advert by post, if required.
I suspect that the advert is in breach of two sections of the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP) code.
1. Nexus Magazine is published in the UK "under licence by Nexus Magazine (UK) Ltd". It is available in high street shops like WH Smiths.
2. The February-March 2010 issue (Vol. 17, No. 2, page 84) carried a classified advert entitled "Pinhole Glasses".
3. The CAP Code, Section 3.1, states "Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove all claims, whether direct or implied, that are capable of objective substantiation."
4. The CAP Code, Section 50.1, states "Medical and scientific claims made about beauty and health-related products should be backed by evidence, where appropriate consisting of trials conducted on people..."
5. I challenge whether Nexus Magazine holds documentary evidence for any of the following claims, and I challenge whether their claims are backed by appropriate evidence consisting of trials conducted on people.
(i) Pinholes in pinhole glasses improve the sharpness of the image;
(ii) Pinhole glasses allow your brain to find the point of focus (i.e. more quickly);
(iii) Regularly wearing pinhole glasses provides regular exercise for the eyes;
(iv) Regularly wearing pinhole glasses helps your eyes' focusing system.
6. I confirm that I have no connections with the advertiser, Nexus Magazine, or with the publishing industry in general. I confirm that I am not involved in legal proceedings with the advertiser or Nexus Magazine.
7. I confirm that I am happy to be identified as the complainant."