New Decisions: Pet Detectives, Electric Cars and More

The following decisions have been published:

Claims about Electric Cars Substantiated

The television and digital advertisement for Meridian Energy’s electric vehicles showed a father and son driving through the countryside, passing wind turbines and states in part: “Meridian has always been committed to looking after New Zealand’s future. So that’s why they’re right behind electric vehicles. They’re good for the environment, just like generating power from wind…and they’re a great way for the drivers of today, to look out for the drivers of tomorrow. Join Meridian and help us in powering today and protecting tomorrow…”

The Complainant said the advertisement claims were misleading because all cars have a negative impact on the environment.  The Advertiser maintained the advertisement was not misleading and provided substantiation for the claims made in the advertisement that electric vehicles were a positive and sustainable alternative to fossil fuel run vehicles.

The Complaints Board agreed that it was unrealistic to compare the environmental impact of electric cars against the absence of all cars and dismissed this as an argument against the advertisement. The Complaints Board ruled the advertisement had been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility, generally and in relation to the environmental claims made in the advertisement. Accordingly, the complaint was Not Upheld.

Evidence of Certification Not Required Within Advertisement

The website and Facebook advertisement for Inspector Spot included the claim “New Zealand’s only Certified Pet Detective.”

The Complainant said the advertisement was misleading as there was no substantiation for the advertiser’s claim that they are the only ‘Certified’ Pet Detective in New Zealand. The Advertiser denied the website and Facebook advertisement were misleading and provided evidence of their internationally recognised certification. The Advertiser also supplied evidence which supported the claim they were the only listed Certified Pet Detective in New Zealand.

The Complaints Board said that not specifically mentioning the certification in the advertisement did not make it misleading, as there are links on the website with further detail about the service and qualification, should consumers require more information.  Accordingly, the Complaints Board ruled the complaint was Not Upheld.