Home

Advocacy Principles

The advocacy principles are taken into consideration when applying Rule 11 of the ASA Code of Ethics.

Rule 11 states: Advocacy Advertising - Expression of opinion in advocacy advertising is an essential and desirable part of the functioning of a democratic society. Therefore such opinions may be robust. However, opinion should be clearly distinguishable from factual information. The identity of an advertiser in matters of public interest or political issue should be clear.

The advocacy principles are:

1.

That Section 14 of the Bill of Rights Act 1990, in granting the right of freedom of expression, allows advertisers to impart information and opinions but that in exercising that right what was factual information and what was opinion, should be clearly distinguishable.

2.

That the right of freedom of expression as stated in Section 14 is not absolute as there could be an infringement of other people's rights. Care should be taken to ensure that this does not occur.

3.

That the Codes fetter the right granted by Section 14 to ensure there is fair play between all parties on controversial issues. Therefore in advocacy advertising and particularly on political matters the spirit of the Code is more important than technical breaches. People have the right to express their views and this right should not be unduly or unreasonably restricted by Rules.

4.

That robust debate in a democratic society is to be encouraged by the media and advertiser and that the Codes should be interpreted liberally to ensure fair play by the contestants.

5.

That it is essential in all advocacy advertisements that the identity of the advertiser is clear.

Top

Advertising Standards Authority New Zealand, PO Box 10-675, Wellington 6143. PH (04) 472 7852 FAX (04) 471 1785 Email asa@asa.co.nz