CAP (Committee of Advertising Practice) write the advertising rules which are then enforced by the ASA (Advertising Standards Agency).

tiktok logo

On the 29th June 2023 they released an “Enforcement Notice” related to advertising of vaping products on the social media platform “TikTok”.

cap tiktok

You can read the Enforcement Notice on the ASA website in PDF format here.

I quote…

“Our Code states that ads which have the direct or indirect effect of promoting nicotine containing vaping products and their components, which are not licensed as medicines, are not allowed in most online media, including social (CAP Code 22.12). Our advertising rules reflect the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TRPRs).

We are aware that some brands are placing – or incentivising third parties to place – content on TikTok relating to vaping products and their components which are labelled as “paid partnership” or “#ad”. We consider this is sufficient to establish that the content is an ad, falling with the remit of the Code.

Therefore, we consider any content tagged with a disclosure label – ‘paid partnership’, or “#ad” – which has the direct or indirect effect of promoting unlicenced vaping products and their components, to be an ad and in breach of the Code (22.12).

Please take immediate action to ensure your advertising complies. If we see continued problems in this area after the 17th July 2023 we will take targeted enforcement action to ensure a level-playing-field across the industry.

This may include – where advertisers are unwilling to comply – working with TikTok and Trading Standards to secure the removal of these ads”

UKVIA Response

The UKVIA (UK Vaping Industry Association) have published this press release as a response…

UKVIA CAP TikTok

Press Release:

CAP issues Enforcement Notice to industry over vaping ads

CAP has issued an Enforcement Notice instructing vaping companies to follow the advertising rules and remove any ads for vapes that are appearing on social media.

We’re aware that some brands are placing – or incentivising third parties to place – content on TikTok relating to vaping products and their components. We’ve put brands on notice that, if we monitor ongoing problems, we’ll be taking targeted enforcement action.

Following legislation, there are significant restrictions surrounding the advertising of vapes and e-cigarettes. This is reflected in our rules (the Advertising Codes). Ads for nicotine-containing vapes not licensed as medicines are not allowed on TV, radio, newspapers, magazines and, crucially, most online media including social media. Ads must be responsible, and that includes not being targeted at or likely to appeal particularly to under-18s.

We know people are concerned about young people vaping and, by extension, ads for vaping products appearing on social media where they shouldn’t and being likely to appeal to or be targeted at under-18s. That’s why we’re taking action, banning ads that break the rules and ensuring they’re quickly removed. And our CEO Guy Parker has spoken about how we’re working with platforms, other regulators and enforcement bodies to ensure young people aren’t being exposed to vape ads on TikTok and other social media where they simply should not be appearing.

This Enforcement Notice makes crystal clear to advertisers/brands the rules that are in place and that if they are using TikTok as a platform to advertise vaping they must stop immediately. This is a high priority issue for us, and we are considering what further action to take in the near future.

Our role is to ensure that vaping ads only appear where they can legally be advertised (to a legitimate adult audience) and are responsible. Currently, they are sometimes being placed in social media and targeted at young people. We’re determined to stamp this out. One vaping ad on these channels is one too many.

Read the full Enforcement Notice here.

ENDS

Michelle

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

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