These reports are case summaries of complaints which appeared to raise issues of substance in relation to the interpretation of the ITC Advertising Standards Code. Summary statistics of non-substantive complaints can be found in the full reports which are obtainable from the ITC.
Complaint from: 1 viewer
A viewer purchased a "Wishpearl" pendant from QVC believing from the advertising that it would contain a pearl. On receipt she found that it did not. When she queried this with QVC she was told that the pearl was sold separately.
The advertising showed various items from the "Wishpearl" range of jewellery, designed to hold single pearls, along with the pearls themselves. The pearls were sold still within oysters; purchasers could therefore open the shell and remove the pearl themselves. Some items within the range, such as the "Wishpearl" ring, were shown sold as a set i.e. a ring and unopened pearl.
The pendant purchased by the viewer was initially shown complete with pearl. The presenter described the item as being shown "with the "Wishpearl" nestling in it". The item was then shown without the pearl enclosed. It was shown again several times throughout the presentation, sometimes with the pearl enclosed and other times without. At no point was it clearly stated that the item came without a pearl and that viewers would have to purchase a pearl separately.
QVC apologised for any confusion caused to viewers, adding that the item may have been less than clearly described as a result of having telephone callers speaking to the presenter on air at the times the pendant was being sold. They confirmed that they had taken steps to ensure such confusion would not arise in future presentations for this product.
The ITC, after watching the hour long presentation, judged that viewers would have been likely to conclude that the pendant was sold with an accompanying pearl, and that the presentation had therefore been misleading.