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DirecTV gets nailed with a punishment for “dishonest” Super Model 4K UHD ads

by on December 10, 2015
 

Stephan Jukic – December 10, 2015

As we’ve already covered on this site, DirecTV is on its way towards offering a fully-fledged pay TV satellite broadcasting service in 4K ultra HD resolution, with live sportscasts, other live programming and movies and shows as well.

However, it seems some of their sexy advertising for these 4K services was a bit, um, premature, at least according to the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus. The National Advertising Division in effect gave the satellite content provider a slap on the wrist for what they claimed was fundamentally dishonest advertising for the company’s 4K content. In effect, DirecTV does not yet offer much 4K UHD content on demand and its live 4K channels are even further down the pipeline with no expectation of their going live and on the air until sometime in early 2016.

However, the company’s advertising for their service, featuring a lovely super model and a talking horse ambling together down a beach, seems to sort of imply that all of DirecTV’s content is already in 4K.

As a result of their catching this supposedly suggested message from the advert, DirecTV competitors like Charter Communications and others complained to the NAD that the ads in question were inaccurate and it seems that the NAD agreed with the opinion. So much so that the organization put out a statement earlier in this week stating that the agency was concerned that the challenged advertisements could reasonably convey the message that DirecTV offers a substantial amount of 4K content”

Following this, the NAD requested that DirecTV “modify its claim to clearly address the developing nature of 4K technology and narrowly tailor the claim by either specifying the number of movies and/or programs provided in 4K or otherwise indicate that only a small amount of programming is currently available in 4K”.

It should be noted that NAD is not a government organization and has no power to legally control the advertising of involved companies. However, the agency is backed by the advertising industry and interested parties in general, and its rulings are widely respected for the sake of a sort of self-regulation that lets potential advertising problems be resolved before they can reach down to government regulators and their potentially costly legal rulings.

In this case however, DirecTV’s advertising campaign, while possibly a bit on the side of exaggerated, does indeed cover the fact that DirecTV is expected to be the only provider of serious broadcast 4K UHD content via satellite for the U.S market during much of 2016. The cable operators who complained certainly aren’t too happy about this given their struggles even with adopting the same resolution. In other words, their complaint possibly had a bit more to do with self-interest than genuine consumer protection and the NAD at least partly could be said to shoulder some slightly bias in their favor if fundamental motives are considered.

In any case, here is the pulled DirecTV advertisement itself, so you the reader of 4K.com can decide for yourself what you think

Story by 4k.com

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