WFA welcomes new global marketing code

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Brussels, 14th September 2011: The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) has welcomed the International Chamber of Commerce's new global marketing code. The code sets both new minimum requirements for marketers and a new reference point for advertising standards globally.

The Consolidated ICC Code for Advertising and Marketing Communication Practice has formed the blueprint of all advertising and marketing codes around the world since 1937. National code provisions on advertising and marketing are developed on this basis. The code is reviewed periodically in order to ensure that marketing practices around the world continue to be aligned with consumer and societal expectations as well as with the development of new technologies. The last version of the code was published in 2006 and this latest revision represents the culmination of two years of collaboration by the advertising industry's constituent elements within the International Chamber of Commerce.

This revision effectively brings the code into the digital age. It reinforces provisions on digital and interactive media, privacy, children, environmental claims and introduces provisions for the first time on online behavioural advertising (OBA). It codifies the OBA self-regulatory principles as developed in the US and EU with a view to making them global. These provisions inter alia prohibit the collection of data from children for the sake of online behavioural advertising.

At the same time, ICC is launching a new online resource: www.codescentre.com. The website has been designed to serve as a one-stop resource for marketers, agencies, regulators and academics on global best practice and self-regulation of advertising and marketing communications. It features a user-friendly, searchable online version of the code, downloads and translations in various languages, as well as companion resources, including links to local associations and country-specific codes from around the world.

As a member of ICC marketing commission and relevant code-drafting task forces, WFA played an active role in the revision process to ensure that the codes' new elements reflect current best practice as championed by leading marketers. The launch of the revised code is seen as a critical initiative at a time when marketers' license to operate is increasingly under pressure globally.

Said Chris Burggraeve, Chief Marketing Officer Anheuser-Busch InBev & President of the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA): “The revised code demonstrates industry's commitment to keep up with evolving societal expectations and the challenges of the digital marketing environment. For brand owners, the global standards enshrined in the Code are a cornerstone of on-going work to extend the coverage of effective self-regulatory systems.”

Stephan Loerke, WFA Managing Director, said: “I encourage local industry to review national codes in order to ensure that they reflect the new global best practice. For in today's increasingly interconnected world, it's not good enough to operate or be seen to operate double standards.”

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Notes for editors
For more information, please contact Will Gilroy
+32 499 20 32 20; w.gilroy@wfanet.org
Source: WFA