11th October 2015
It has been announced by The Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practise (BCAP), who set the rules for all TV and radio advertising, that there will be a review of payday loan companies advertising in programs that are popular with children. This is separate to banning ads in children programs, this is to target popular programs such as X Factor whose audience include both kids and adults.
The Children’s Group who campaign to protect children in society and the review has been called after some groups raised concerns about this type of advertising and it seems like the BCAP will investigate. The children groups face a battle as they need to gather proof to support their claim and could take months or years to drum up a report.
The BCAP want to review if the numbers of children watching popular TV programs will have a bad influence on them and would want to impose a restriction on TV advertising if they find evidence that it does. This will be a big blow for companies such as Wonga and Quick Quid who have big budgets to conduct advertising campaigns and gives them the edge over its competitors by increasing brand recognition.
Payday loan companies will argue the case the programming they target in peak times are mainly for adult audiences which outweigh the amount of children watching these programs. They will also feel that even if children are watching these programs they will be watching with an adult who can give them guidance about such ads.
There may also be an impact to commercial broadcasters revenue such as ITV and Sky who rely on TV advertising to function as a business. Even though commercial broadcasters have to abide by any laws set by the BCAP and OFCOM they will be able to present a case and will have statistics available of the type of audience watching their programming.
The BCAP feel there is not enough evidence at the moment to enforce an immediate ban, but they take any claims seriously when it involves children. The BCAP have to be ethical and sensitive when it comes to such issues as payday loan advertising and this is why an investigation and review has been set up to determine the effects on children of advertising in popular TV shows.