Cell C 15c per MB advertising misleading: ASA

A billboard from Cell C which states “If it costs more than 15c/MB you’re paying too much,” has been ruled as misleading advertising by the Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa (ASA).

The complaint stated that a subscriber recently exceeded their data bundle only to discover that he was being billed 99c/MB.

When he queried this, he said that Cell C informed him that he needed to purchase an additional data bundle on top of the data allowance included in his contract to qualify for the 15c/MB.

Cell C did not dispute this, with its representative, Clear Copy, explaining that the advertisement was a call to action for two groups of people:

  1. Cell C customers not aware of smartdata bundles; and
  2. Subscribers of other networks who are probably paying more than 15c/MB.

Clear Copy told the ASA that Cell C has two types of data charges: a flat 99c/MB rate and a 15c/MB rate available through the operator’s SmartData bundles.

In its ruling on the matter, the ASA said that the billboard creates a misleading impression by omitting material pricing information, and is ambiguous as a reasonable person would assume that the 15c/MB data price applies to all Cell C’s subscribers.

The ASA instructed Cell C to withdraw the advertising.

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Cell C 15c per MB advertising misleading: ASA