The advertisement for a computer game depicted characters from the game. It stated the following:
€19.99 12+ YEARS
PS 4 826/6334 XBOX 836/3859 SWITCH 823/8874
LOTS MORE ONLINE
The complainant considered the advertisement to be misleading as it implied it was available to purchase immediately at the price stated. The product, however, at that price was only available as a pre-order as the game had not yet been released.
The advertisers confirmed that this was a printing error on the price of the item in question on the ROI copy of the Christmas gift guide and apologised for the error.
They confirmed they have since given guidance on the lack of information on the pre-release and launch date, which was missing from the catalogue. They said that both of these issues were due to a once-off human error, and that the issue had been addressed with the team who develop the printed gift guides.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response. The Committee noted that while the computer game was featured in the advertisement as being on sale, the product in question was not available at the time, and was not marked as being only available as a pre-order. They considered that by omitting this fact, the advertisement was likely to mislead the consumers. In the circumstances the Committee considered the advertising was in breach of section 4.1 of the Code.
The advertising must not reappear in its current form. The Committee told the advertisers to ensure that the errors in advertising are kept to a minimum.