Friday 10 October 2014

Official: E-Cigs Are NOT Tobacco Products

The Puddlecoteville local radio station - listenership approximately 500 and carrying adverts from Bob the mechanic round the corner - picked up on the excellent news of the ASA's new rules on e-cig advertising yesterday ... as did other obscure outlets such as the BBC.
Electronic cigarettes can be shown in UK TV adverts from 10 November, the Committee of Advertising Practice says. 
While the advertising of e-cigarettes on TV is currently allowed, the device itself must not appear on screen.
I expect the reactionary dinosaur wing of the tobacco control industry were spitting scales at this news because it's another big step towards a rightful general acceptance of e-cigs by society at large.

What better on a Friday can I offer you than that, eh? Compound their discomfort tonight by celebrating with with a beer and a moody curry, why doncha.
Advertising of tobacco products is banned in the UK, except in the trade press.
Indeed it is, but as anyone who knows anything about e-cigs is aware (not applicable to aforesaid tobacco control dinosaurs) e-cigs are not tobacco products. It's something that the CAP were much at pains to stress in their Regulatory Statement - in fact, they stressed it no less than five times (emphases mine).
Rule 4: Marketing communications / advertisements must make clear that the product is an e-cigarette and not a tobacco product
Neither this rule, nor the broader rule framework within which it sits, prohibits products being shown, or shown in use, either in broadcast or non-broadcast advertising, so long as it is clear that the product is an e-cigarette and not a tobacco product
E-cigarettes are not a tobacco product and are not currently subject to the same legislative controls as tobacco;  
BCAP consider that the new rules, which have strong prohibitions about the indirect promotion of tobacco and which require advertisements to make clear that the product is an e-cigarette and not a tobacco product, achieve the right balance between the legitimate right to commercial speech and the need to protect audiences from potentially harmful material. 
Marketing communications must make clear that the product is an e-cigarette and not a tobacco product.
Which begs the question, why are e-cigs included in the EU's Tobacco Products Directive and why, on Monday, is the global tobacco control industry gathering in Moscow to discuss them at the Framework Convention for Tobacco Control's COP6?

How is it that a British regulatory authority has the capability to both recognise the difference between e-cigs/tobacco and also create a unique, targeted regulatory environment applicable only to the new category, whereas the EU and FCTC - despite soaking up billions in taxes from us all - are incompetently unable to do the same?

Could it be that the ASA and CAP are independent and so properly impartial, thereby safely vaccinated (geddit?) against pharmaceutical sponsorship and special pleading ... unlike the EU's TPD and WHO's FCTC?

Just sayin'.


Norbert Zillatron said...

A common (deliberately fostered by the ANTZ to sow confusion?) misconception of the TPD:

There are three relevant section (TITLE):
I. Tobacco
II. Tobacco products
III. Ecigs and herbal smoke (WTF?!), initially called "Non Tobacco Products"

So, ecigs are "regulated" seperately. Which also implies that they are not tobacco products.

In Excrement 20 they treat ecigs like tobacco products and even worse. Not as tp.

Splitting semantic hair ...

SteveW said...

It's good news, but the cynic in me suspects they would have liked to simply ban advertising of 'nicotine containing products', were it not for the fact that not only would they have to ban adverts for NRT patches/gums etc, but set themselves for mass complaints about ASDA showing tomatoes, potatoes and suchlike before the watershed.

May we live in interesting times...

nisakiman said...

Gawd, this is a disaster, DP, if they are allowed to advertise e-cigs on TV.

Before you know it we'll be dealing with tens of thousands of nine-year-olds hanging around on park benches, eyes dark and hollow, lost in the depths of nicotine addiction. They will be hungrily sucking away at their bubble-gum flavoured e-cigs wrapped in brown paper bags, and desperately trying to persuade passing adults to nip in the corner shop to buy them twenty Capstan Full Strength.

We need to get that nice Mr McKee to have a word with the ASA about this. I'm sure he could find a way to avert this ticking time bomb. After all, God is on his side. In fact, I understand he taught God everything he knows....

Telos said...

>What better on a Friday can I offer you than that, eh?

You could also send me 100 quid in the post?

>Which begs the question

That should be 'raises the question', not 'begs the question'. (Better make that 200 quid in the post.)