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New Social Media Guidance for 2024 Olympians

The opportunity to compete at the Olympic Games represents one of the most honorable achievements of any athlete’s career. And while Olympians may have always been trailblazers in the world of sports, today’s competitors are more than just athletes – they are brand ambassadors, marketing representatives, and social media influencers. While an athlete’s ability to … Continue Reading

Navigating the Regulatory Maze: Understanding the ASA Ruling re. Supreme CBD

Clear disclosure of an ad is of paramount importance in the advertising world, and we have discussed this previously in our blogs here and here. In the ever-evolving landscape of advertising regulations, the recent decision by the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) regarding social media posts by former footballers in relation to Supreme CBD’s products … Continue Reading

Harmful gender stereotypes or a double standard? Calvin Klein and GIRLvsCANCER ads banned in the UK

The authors thank Zarah Bhatti for her contributions to this post. The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned two ads for breach of the rule prohibiting the use of gender stereotypes in advertising, which was introduced in 2019. We commented at the time that these restrictions were likely to see a rise in number … Continue Reading

Global Brand Protection – How to Manage an Anti-Counterfeiting Program

For every successful brand, it is critical to properly protect and to productively develop and use the underlying intellectual property (IP) in that brand to ensure its long-term growth.… Continue Reading

UK Supreme Court rules on AI and Patent Applications

In a much anticipated judgment, the UK Supreme Court delivered on 20 December 2023 its ruling in the case of Thaler v Comptroller-General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks (Thaler (Appellant) v Comptroller-General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks (Respondent) – The Supreme Court) on whether an artificial intelligence (AI) system can be named as the … Continue Reading

UK Online Safety Act Becomes Law

The often-controversial UK Online Safety Act (the OSA) has finally become law after receiving Royal Assent yesterday, heralding the end of the era of largely self-regulation for user generated content by technology platforms, whether large or small. The OSA will impose new duties on all providers who host “user generated content” (i.e. services which allow … Continue Reading

UK Product Safety and Online Marketplace Consultation

The UK government announced on 2 August 2023 a new consultation for proposed changes to the UK’s product safety laws. Whilst much of this consultation is concerned with the regulatory compliance arrangements for the testing and marking of products what has received less immediate media coverage are proposals also included to impose additional duties on … Continue Reading

The rising regulatory tide on environmental claims – Shell found in breach of the Advertising Standards Authority’s rules, again!

Last month, oil giant, Shell, was caught out again by UK regulator – the Advertising Standards Authority (“ASA“) – for breaching its rules against making misleading environmental claims. Previous ASA ruling against Shell This latest ruling is reminiscent of a 2020 ASA ruling against Shell for a radio ad, where it used the claim “Drive … Continue Reading

Copyright protection for AI works: UK vs US

The use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) is growing, but whether AI-generated works can be protected by copyright remains unclear and the position is inconsistent across different jurisdictions including the UK and USA. A recent US case, concerning a comic book which included AI-generated images, offers an opportunity to contrast the two countries’ approaches to AI-generated … Continue Reading

The Rise of Influencer Marketing – Contractual Considerations

According to the UK’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport report on influencer culture, the global sector is expected to grow from $6.0 billion in 2020 to $24.1 billion by 2025, at a compound annual growth rate of 32%. Influencer marketing offers brands a unique opportunity to target and connect with online communities, using … Continue Reading

Don’t let the Sun Go Down on EU 2: Proposed further changes to UK plans for Retained EU Law post Brexit and guidance on IP provisions

We reported last week on the UK government’s decision to reduce the scope of its proposed Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill. As originally drafted had that bill become law then all direct EU legislation currently retained as UK law would have automatically lapsed at the end of this year unless specifically retained or … Continue Reading

Don’t let the Sun Go Down on EU: Changes to UK plans for Retained EU Law post Brexit

There has been considerable media coverage in the UK this week following the government’s announcement that it is to reduce the scope of its controversial Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill (Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill publications – Parliamentary Bills – UK Parliament). Had this bill entered into law in its original … Continue Reading

The Subvertising Movement: Protecting your Brand from “Brandalism”

The authors would like to thank Eben Kurtz for his valuable contribution to this post. Heard of the climate activists defacing advertisements, billboards and bus shelters? Brandalism is a recent anti-advertising movement which uses a brand’s own assets and marketing channels against the brand itself, through replacing legitimate advertisements with spoofs and parodies (known as “subvertising”). … Continue Reading

World IP Day 2023: Accelerating Inclusivity of our IP Systems

Every year, on April 26, intellectual property organizations around the world observe “World IP Day” – an event established by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to raise awareness of patents, copyrights, designs, and trademarks, and to celebrate the creativity and contributions of inventors, authors, artists and entrepreneurs. The theme for 2023 is “Women and … Continue Reading

Rare Enforcement Notice Issued by UK Advertising Regulator for “Hot Air” Ads

On 9 March 2023, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) took the rare step of issuing an Enforcement Notice against any advertiser distributing ads for electric plug-in mini-heaters that claim – directly or indirectly – that such products are a viable alternative to central heating. As noted in our previous blog, the ASA recently banned a … Continue Reading

UK Regulator Bans Misleading “Hot Air” Ads

The cost-of-living crisis is a concern for all consumers, with many carrying out research to understand ways that spending can be reduced. One major issue during the cold winter days is the cost of heating bills. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned four separate adverts which relate to electric plug-in mini heaters. All the … Continue Reading

Gambling on Top Flight Footballers: ASA Ruling

The Advertising Standards Authority (“ASA”) has issued its first ruling under the new rules that prohibit gambling ads with “strong appeal” to under-18s, providing a useful example as to how the new rules will be applied. Updated Gambling Ad Rules As covered in more detail in a previous article for this blog, on 1 October … Continue Reading

UK Regulators Step up the Pressure on Influencer Marketing: Principles for Platforms, Brands and Content Creators

Over the past few years the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been actively taking steps to address consumer protection concerns with sponsorships and endorsements within social media posts that have not been clearly disclosed. Indeed, the scale of the issue was highlighted in the Influencer Monitoring Report, published in March 2021 by another … Continue Reading

God Save the Queen’s Royal Warrant Holders

With gratitude to Heloise Morle for her contributions to this post. In a modern world of celebrity and influencer endorsements, there is arguably one endorsement that still trumps others: the Royal Warrant. The granting of an English monarch’s royal seals of approval dates back to 1155 – when King Henry II granted the Weavers’ Company … Continue Reading

UK regulators crack down on ‘greenwashing’

Within seven months[1] of the UK regulator, the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA“), announcing its review of green claims in the fashion retail sector, it has opened an investigation into such environmental claims made by various fashion businesses, including ASOS and George at Asda.  This comes less than a year after all businesses were put … Continue Reading

Regulator Advises UK Government on Possible Changes to Consumer and Competition Law to Support UK Green Goals

The Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA“) has published advice for the UK Government on changes that could be made to consumer and competition law to facilitate the UK achieving a “Net Zero” economy by 2050. Whilst the regulator does not consider that current law represents a barrier to such sustainability goal, the CMA nonetheless recommends … Continue Reading

The Rise of ‘Voice Cloning’ Provides More Evidence of the Need for Urgent Legal Reform in the UK

Earlier this year, we published our blog on the topic of ‘Deepfakes’, in which we argued that the rise of this technology necessitates urgent legal reform. Without the courts developing English law in a way that they are usually unwilling to do, the current position is that it is not well-suited to deal with the problems … Continue Reading
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