The Advertising Standards Authority is Meeting About YouTube

By Leon Hurley on at

Why the rules that govern all media regarding advertising doesn't seem to apply to YouTube still baffles me, but now the ASA is getting together to discuss the problem.

It's been, in part, brought about by last year's Oreo cookie thing, where Newsround, of all people, investigated paid-for promotions for the biscuit that hadn't been declared clearly. In that case, the ASA ruled that the videos had to be taken down until they were clearly labelled as advertising, stating "brands and vloggers now have to make it very clear, before you click on a video, that it's a promotional video."

While that issue covered snacks, it's a similar problem to publishers exerting control over gaming channels, such as the Shadow of Mordor deal that promised early access in exchange for favourable coverage.

This week, Guy Parker, the CEO of the Advertising Standards Authority, announced that the organisation's council is meeting to discuss the issue and "how brands are working with vloggers to promote their products and services." According to Parker, YouTuber's have been asking for help since the Oreo incident, stating most wanted to understand "where the line is between ads and editorial — which is not an easy line to draw". (Again, what is the issue here? Were you paid? Then it's an advert.) He also said that the "vloggers" they spoke to wanted support to "push back against some companies and PRs they say are pressurising them to hide that the content is an ad".

[The UK is cracking down on advertisers that give free gifts to YouTube stars in exchange for air time - Business Insider]