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Subhash Kamath re-elected as Asci chairman

August One Partners LLP MD NS Rajan re-elected vice-chairman

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Mumbai: The Advertising Standards Council of India’s (ASCI’s) board has elected Subhash Kamath as chairman for a second consecutive term, here on Thursday.

August One Partners LLP managing director NS Rajan was re-elected as the vice-chairman of the board. The vote, which followed the 35th annual general meeting, ensures continuity for the several initiatives the advertising self-regulator had kickstarted over the past year, Asci said in a statement.

“We have flagged off important initiatives in the digital space, such as the influencer guidelines and the monitoring of promotional content. We are becoming future-ready in this ever-changing marketing and media landscape. The second term will allow me to push further with these initiatives, which are showing immense promise. As we expand our presence, we are engaging more with consumers as well to increase awareness of their rights," said Kamath.

The Asci board was expanded this year with the inclusion of members such as noted academician and social activist Dr Ranjana Kumari,  educationist Dr Indu Sahani, technology entrepreneur Rajesh Patel, and finance sector expert and former editor Rajrishi Singhal – strengthening governance through partnering with external stakeholders and civil society. 

In a statement, the industry watchdog said it will continue its digitisation efforts on the complaints management system as well as through a new website and learning tools for the industry. It will also focus on consumer, industry, and student education and thought leadership initiatives through collaborations.

Under Kamath, Asci has launched several initiatives which included Influencer guidelines for labelling promotional content which helped consumers distinguish paid content from organic, Alliance with French digital service provider Reech for monitoring influencer content using artificial intelligence for paid marketing communication and real-money gaming advertising guidelines introduced in collaboration with the ministry of information and broadcasting made it mandatory to inform consumers of the associated risks.

Asci also escalated more than 200 potentially misleading advertisements based on the advisory on COVID-related advertising by the ministry of Ayush, while also issuing its own COVID advisory for advertisers in October 2020. The industry body's ‘Chup Na Baitho’ campaign, encouraging consumers to report ads with misleading claims, reached more than one million social media users, making them aware of their rights and how to file complaints, it added.

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