Advertising self-regulation is a system by which the advertising industry actively polices itself. The three parts of the industry—the advertisers who pay for the advertising, the advertising agencies responsible for its form and content, and the media which carry it—agree on standards of practice and set up a system to ensure that advertisements failing to meet those standards are quickly removed or corrected. This approach is an alternative to detailed legislation, but not to all legislation. It is now widely accepted that self-regulation works best as a complement to legislation, and that it can help provide an additional level of consumer protection.
Self-Regulation is an area of focus for Global Actions on Harmful drinking because in some instances around the world, self-regulatory standards and systems are non-existent—and in others, they could be far more effective if aligned with best practices in design and implementation.
There is an important need to build upon the beverage alcohol industry’s advanced self-regulatory marketing standards in many developed countries, and to apply relevant best practices to help establish effective marketing self-regulation in the developing world.