Ad committee ready to drop restrictions on Royal images

The Committee on Advertising Practice is to drop restrictions on advertisers using images of the Royal Family, just days after Live TV was found guilty of breaching its code.

The committee, which sets the advertising codes policed by the Advertising Standards Authority, is known to have discussed dropping the clause at a meeting last Friday.

But ironically, the rule change could be delayed because the ASA does not want to be seen giving into Kelvin McKenzie, Live TV’s managing director. McKenzie effectively snubbed the ASA punishment by replacing the face of Paul Gascoigne with Will Carling on a second version of the spoof Live TV poster.

“The committee is unhappy about what Live TV did,” says an agency source, “but the point is that the code is an anomaly.”

An ASA spokesman says: “The advertising codes are living documents. They can be adapted very quickly to fit with legislative change or changes in public attitudes or values. So we would consider valid appeals to change the codes.”

Live TV was reported to the ASA on two breaches of the code – one for portrayal of the Royal Family and one for obscenity. The ASA threw out the obscenity claim, but has written to Mirror Group chief executive David Montgomery to ask why the Daily Mirror carried an ad censured by the ASA.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here