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.
Loudness in sponsor credits
Complaint from: 6 viewers
‘Unconditional Love’ was transmitted on ITV1 on 20 January. The programme was sponsored by HSBC and included sponsor credits for the bank at the start and end of each commercial break.
Complaints were received that the volume levels of the sponsor credits were excessive.
The sponsor credits were found to be highly ‘compressed’, in technical terms, and of an excessive level, meaning that they seemed very loud compared with the natural and ‘uncompressed’ audio in the programme. The effect was exacerbated by periods of silence during the break captions immediately before the sponsor credits.
The ITC accepted that the excessive loudness was due to poor operational practice rather than a deliberate attempt to give the credits undue prominence. However, it judged that audio levels between the programme and sponsor credits should have been better balanced. Channel Television have acknowledged that a problem with the network transmission had occurred on this occasion.
Complaints upheld. Breach of ITC Code Rule 6.9.