ASA call to public amidst rise in sms porn ads complaints

An increase in complaints about sms porn commercials on e.tv has prompted the South African advertising regulator to advise the public how to make “meaningful”  complaints.

The Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa (ASA) says that in terms of its mandate it can only react to public complaints about advertising on a case-by-case basis, and that in order for it to consider those complaints all the relevant information must be provided.

“The complaints also suggest that the (sms porn) commercials are not always appropriately scheduled,” says the ASA in an email accompanying a press release distributed today. The ASA’s reference to scheduling is relevant because in August last year the ASA ruled against e.tv for showing sms porn ads during ad breaks of a late-night-movie whose “content was unrelated to this type of service”.

“We would greatly appreciate if you could share the following information with your readers in order to empower them to lodge a meaningful complaint and avoid unnecessary frustration,” says the ASA in its email.

In today’s press release the ASA says it requires the following information in dealing with complaints about sms service advertisments:

  1. Time, date, and channel on which the commercial was screened;
  2. The programming/movie during which the commercial was screened;
  3. The keyword used to SMS(words like “SEX”, “XXX”, “PORN”, and the like are used); and
  4. The SMS code. Usually a 5-digit number to which the keyword has to be sent.

“The proliferation of adverts of this nature coupled with the quick succession in which they are often flighted makes it difficult to source copies of the relevant advertising without the above information,”  says the ASA.

 “If we are unable to source the correct information we would not be able to track down the appropriate advertiser and advertising, meaning that we will not be able to consider the complaint,” it says.

Gateway News emailed a list of questions to e.tv early this afternoon in connection with its persistent flighting of pornographic sms ads, which are more graphic and in our view more of a threat to SA’s cellphone savvy teenagers, than some of the adult programmes such as Naked News, that have offended the public and led to e.tv switch-off campaigns. In an email response late this afternoon e.tv says its media department is working on a response to our questions as well as to the ASA press release.

3 Comments

  1. Very nice ETV logo – who designed it?

  2. It is very annoying to watch your Saturday movie and every add break is a sex add. It is embarrassing to sit and watch this with friends and family. Please stop this advertisements as I have stopped watching your Saturday movies because of this, I am sure i am not the only person experiencing this. If i need to watch porn i would get a video where it is private

  3. Jul is swk n vrou se liggaam is n tempel van GOD belangrik geag om kinders te baar en liefde maak n instelling tussen man en vrou om een met mekaar te wees nie vuil en vulger swak seks geen wonder daar is so baie verkragtens tiener swangerskappe en egskeidingsen geen respek