Advertising to children
Advertising to children

The following TMT practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Advertising to children
  • Legislation
  • CAP and BCAP Codes
  • Rules prohibiting the sexualisation of under-18s in advertising
  • Scheduling rules
  • Food and drink
  • Gambling
  • Sales promotions
  • Data protection
  • In-app purchases
  • More...

IP COMPLETION DAY: 11pm (GMT) on 31 December 2020 marks the end of the Brexit transition/implementation period entered into following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. At this point in time (referred to in UK law as ‘IP completion day’), key transitional arrangements come to an end and significant changes begin to take effect across the UK’s legal regime. This document contains guidance on subjects impacted by these changes. Before continuing your research, see Practice Note: What does IP completion day mean for TMT?

This Practice Note summarises key issues that arise when advertising to children. It covers:

  1. Legislation

  2. CAP and BCAP Codes

  3. Food and drink

  4. Gambling

  5. Sales promotions

  6. Data protection

  7. In-app purchases

  8. Online behavioural advertising

Legislation

The key legislation that governs advertising practices is the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008, SI 2008/1277 (CPUTR 2008) which implement the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive 2005/29/EC (UCPD).

The UK government has published guidance on the CPUTR 2008.

The CPUTR 2008 deal with issues such as price advertising, false or misleading advertising and comparative advertising. They apply regardless of whether activities are targeted at children or not. Unfair commercial practices are prohibited and may also be a criminal offence. Regulation 2(5) also provides protection for vulnerable consumers, which includes children.

A European Commission study has explained why children need extra protection in an advertising context:

  1. children have clear difficulties in recognising online

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