In its advertising campaign MTN said that “We all know that surfing the internet is fun. Imagine getting unlimited internet from MTN for 289 per month”.
Three consumers lodged complaints against MTN’s advertising, arguing that the term “unlimited Internet” is misleading as the service has restrictions.
“The advertising leads people to believe there are no restrictions when there actually are. The internet is actually limited to 2GB and 10GB,” the complainants argued. MTN’s ‘uncapped’ mobile broadband throttles users to 256kbps after the fair use limit is reached.
MTN hit back saying that they did not impose any fair use policies during the period which the advertisements ran, and that they clearly stated that that the “Unlimited Promotion ends on the 31 January 2012″.
MTN further highlighted that “Fair Use” policies will apply after 1 February 2012, and that some complainants may have misunderstood the fair use policy.
The ASA directorate said that the fact that consumers sign a 24-month contract with MTN, and that the ‘unlimited’ promotion is only valid for a 3 month period, the company’s advertisement is “at best ambiguous”.
The ASA subsequently ruled that the MTN advertisements are misleading.