Unfair Advertising

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Definition: Unfair Advertising

Unfair advertising, also known as false or deceptive advertising, refers to the use of false or misleading statements in advertising leading to misrepresentation of the concerned product, which may negatively affect consumers. Advertising has the potential to influence people to enter commercial transactions that they might otherwise avoid, so, many countries have regulations to control such deceptive advertising.

Unfair advertising can be divided into two categories:

a) Pricing-based methods: These involve hidden fees and surcharges, misuse of the word ‘free’ and ‘going out of business’ sales.

b) Other deceptive methods: These include manipulation of units of measurement and standards, oversized packaging, manipulation of terms, inconsistent comparison, misleading illustrations, false colouring, guarantee without a remedy specified and so on.

An example in the Indian scenario is Heinz's popular product Complan, which faced trial for claiming that it helps children grow twice as tall as they would on having any other drink.


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