BT broadband ads banned by ASA

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in the United Kingdom has ruled that some recent broadband advertising claims by British Telecommunications (BT) were misleading.

The agency acted on complaints by BT's broadband competitor Virgin Media and others that three BT ads unfairly claimed in 2011 that its Infinity broadband service was "unbeatable," among other claims.

BT has been banned from using those ads in their current form.

The judgment comes a few months after the ASA worked with the Committee on Advertising Practices to establish guidelines governing the broadband advertising claims of ISPs in the United Kingdom.

The rules, which define and limit claims of "unlimited" broadband services, came after U.K. regulator Ofcom found that most broadband consumers were not getting the broadband speed that were advertised to them.

Ofcom's finding was similar to an earlier finding in the United States by the Federal Communications Commission. The regulatory body found that broadband speeds advertised by most U.S. ISPs were lower than consumers actually received from their services.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) recently was targeted by a lawsuit from a customer who claimed the carrier did not deliver the DSL speed it advertised. Filed in California Superior Court in Los Angeles County, the complaint alleges breach of contract and violations of California consumer-protection statutes.

For more:
- the ASA decision is here
- see this ZDNet U.K. post

Related articles
The ASA and CAP introduce new broadband ad rules in January
Verizon recently got sued over its DSL speed claims

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