• Professional News
  • 02 May 2014

New requirements as to marketing to children and young people under way

The Danish Consumer Ombudsman has sent new guidelines for marketing to children and young people out for consultation. The guidelines gather and update the legal rules in the area and are much more far-reaching than previous guidelines.

The Danish Consumer Ombudsman has sent new guidelines for marketing to children and young people out for consultation. The guidelines are based on the latest trends on the market and the most recent amendments made to the Danish Marketing Practices Act (markedsføringsloven), the Danish Administration of Justice Act (retsplejeloven), the Danish Payment Services Act (betalingstjenesteloven) and the Danish Financial Business Act (lov om finansiel virksomhed).

The new, more far-reaching guidelines gather and update the legal rules governing marketing directed at children and young people.

Protection of children and young people
The guidelines aim at clearly defining legitimate and illegitimate marketing behaviour when businesses market goods and services to children and young people.

Guideline content
The guidelines list the provisions of the Marketing Practices Act relevant to marketing directed at children and young people, of which section 8 is the most important.

The guidelines also outline the scope of application, for example that marketing activities must be “directed specifically” at children and young people for section 8 of the Act to apply.

Finally, the guidelines refer to marketing approaches specifically directed at children and young people. Section 8(2) sets out that marketing directed at children and young people must not directly or indirectly incite to violence, for instance by illustrating marketing toy gun ads with lifelike scenarios picturing soldiers exchanging gunfire.

Section 8(3) of the Act prohibits the use and mention of as well as references to alcohol and other intoxicants in marketing activities directed at children and young people – even when the marketed product has nothing to do with the alcohol and intoxicants product category. That is a tightening of the Act as compared to previous versions.

Case-by-case assessment still necessary
The guidelines are not exhaustive. As a result, it should be assessed on a case-by-case basis whether marketing directed at children and young people violates the law.

The consultation period ends on 23 May 2014, and the guidelines will take effect on 1 July 2014 according to plan.

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