back to article TalkTalk's voice-over is writing speeds that its text can't match: Ad pulled from broadcast

An advert for TalkTalk broadband has been taken down for promoting incorrect speeds, The Register can confirm. The UK's Advertising Standards Authority was alerted after Reg reader Rich Campbell noticed the TV broadcast's voice-over speeds did not match the ones promoted in the text. "Clearly you need something like 600Mbps …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Clearcast, the body responsible for clearing ads before they're shown on TV,

    WTF happened to OFCOM ?

    That's the best way to give companies free rein in advertising - make it a byzantine landscape for complaints and oversight.

    1. theblackhand Silver badge

      Re: Clearcast, the body responsible for clearing ads before they're shown on TV,

      Clearcast are "a non-governmental organisation which pre-approves most British television advertising" (from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clearcast) and are owned by the commercial TV channels in the UK - they basically ensure that advertising meets BCAP/CAP standards before it is broadcast.

      OFCOM are still the regulatory authority, but Clearcast is there as a commercial standards checker to try and avoid

      It's probably the opposite of what you are suggesting - rather than OFCOM having to step in every time something goes wrong, the advertisers and broadcasters try to independently check that advertising meets the requirements to avoid excessive involvement by the regulator. It doesn't eliminate issues, as this shows, but it does help ensure regulatory overhead doesn't cause too many issues.

  2. adam payne Silver badge

    Reg reader Rich Campbell noticed the TV broadcast's voice-over speeds did not match the ones promoted in the text.

    Sounds like a certain ISP was hoping no one was reading the on screen text.

    1. tmTM

      "Our marketing strategy is hoping people don't pay attention to our adverts"

      1. Craig 2 Silver badge

        "Our marketing strategy is hoping people don't pay CLOSE attention to our adverts"

        FTFY

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Given this is TalkTalk, I suspect they rely on people ignoring large parts of the advert. If they are going to do any checks into the TalkTalk brand let alone read the fine print, they're not likely to become a TalkTalk customer.

          So ANY is more accurate than CLOSE.

      2. teebie

        "Our marketing strategy is hoping people don't pay attention to our adverts, and that the *definitely* don't pay any attention to the new, or reviews, or notices we send out telling them we sprayed their personal details over everything..."

    2. Rich Campbell

      The text was ok it was the voiceover wording which was wrong - should have been spotted well before it hit the screens though either way.

  3. Graham Jordan

    Wait, someone beat BT and/or Virgin Media to dobbing them in? Niiiiiiiiice

  4. mr-slappy

    Advertising Standards Authority alerter

    "The Advertising Standards Authority was alerted after Reg reader Rich Campbell noticed the TV broadcast's voice-over speeds did not match the ones promoted in the text"

    I'm guess Reg reader Rich Campbell will start getting speeds of about 500kbps from TalkTalk pretty soon...

    1. Martin Summers Silver badge

      Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

      Thankfully there's no suggestion Rich actually uses TalkTalk. I'd be quite upset if I discovered any Reg reader is a TalkTalk subscriber!

      1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

        Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

        Sorry to upset you, but I am!

        Why not? It's cheap, and works, and is just dumb pipe to me. Most of the critical infrastructure (fttc) is going to be openreach anyway.

        I never have slow downs. The only issue for me is no native IPv6 but my router tunnels that to he.net which is only 7ms away.

        Last months bandwidth use was 2.5Tb.

        I could pay more, but I'm not into designer labels, or snobbery.

        1. Martin Summers Silver badge

          Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

          Jamie, there are no words...

          1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

            I don't use Windows, if that helps?!

            1. theblackhand Silver badge

              Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

              You're lucky - you get your advertised speeds.

              For the less fortunate, you have hours of pleasure talking to TalkTalk support who basically just get your to restart everything in the hope that either the problem or you go away. Providing clear details of the problem (the broadband connection is two slow, it is TRAINING at 512Kbps down/1Mbps up) leads to long conversations about how your wifi connection is causing the issue while you are connected via an ethernet cable. Asking for the issue to be escalated to engineering results in 4-5 follow up calls until eventually you stumble upon someone who actually tries to help and the issue is resolved 1-2 weeks later.

              This isn't an isolated problem, I've assisted about a dozen friends or associates with this type of issue - while other ISP's generally just suffer contention issues or speed issues due to cabling problems, TalkTalks poor performance is largely through configuration errors on their part.

              1. Jamie Jones Silver badge
                Thumb Up

                Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

                Actually, I should have mentioned that. I agree 100%.

                I have twice in the past reported a configuration error on their side. The first time (their youtube cdn server), someone clueless ended up suggesting I asked for help in the community(!).

                The second time (reverse dns), they were again clueless, and it wasn't fixed until about a year later.

                In both occasions, I was able to work around the problem - reporting it was a courtesy.

                But you are entirely correct. The place I'm in now is only 4 years old, and I'm close to the cabinet, and always get 8MB/s + with the correct sites.

                As it was the cheapest deal at the time, I see no reason not to keep it - it's been stable the 4 years that I've been here.

                Of course, if I needed help, or indeed was suffering problems that were not my fault, I'd probably end up leaving quite quickly, but in the meantime, it works for me, and I feel most detractors are just being snobbish.

                1. old man

                  Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

                  I agree with Jamie Jones about talktalk we get about 50mbs and phone calls included to landline & mobiles phones free for the first hour to Australia new Zealand Canada USA and all of Europe for £40 .Only problems we ever had were down to open reach. When we were with virgin phone calls alone were closer to £90 and they refused to let us take our number going

            2. Kane Silver badge
              Joke

              Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

              "I don't use Windows, if that helps?!"

              So, you're a damned Mac user then??

              1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

                Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

                Noooooooo! FreeBSD, Linux (on the pre-loaded embedded routers), and android all the way!

        2. Rob007

          Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

          I find TalkTalk's business customer support good as well as the pipe being cheap and fast enough (note this isn't the same as their home service)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

      You're suggesting he didn't get 500kbs anyway?

    3. Rich Campbell

      Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

      No way would I EVER use them as an ISP :p

    4. Inventor of the Marmite Laser Silver badge

      Re: Advertising Standards Authority alerter

      Why would Talk talk give him a superior line and leave everyone else wallowing in their ineptitude

  5. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "We immediately took action to correct it once we became aware" . .

    . . that someone had noticed our intentional falsehood and reported it.

    There, FTFY.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "We immediately took action to correct it once we became aware" . .

      "We immediately took action to correct it once we became aware"

      Unlike the John Lewis 'Never Knowingly Undersold' ploy... we'll keep the price high but will price match if you prove we're overcharging... but only to you and not the next mu^H^H punter who comes along

  6. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    So what had they claimed then?

    All the article mentions is that you would need 600Mbps to do what they claimed... presumably it was something like "download an HD film in 2.3 microseconds", but I'm curious now. Obviously I've never seen said advert.

    1. Rich Campbell

      The text on the ad said speeds up up to 67Mb/sec whereas the girls voice said up to 67 Megabytes/sec - a hell of a difference.

      1. JetSetJim Silver badge
        Pint

        Would have been nice if the article had mentioned that. But good spot, nonetheless

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "67Mb/sec whereas the girls voice said up to 67 Megabytes/sec"

        So someone screwed up the expensive voice over rather than the easy to fix text.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  7. DontFeedTheTrolls Silver badge
    Facepalm

    "But the ISP has found it difficult to shake off its poor customer service track record."

    And its ability to keep customers data safe.

    1. TechnicalBen Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Well therein lies the problem. They are trying to shake off it's poor customer service track record... instead of, you know... changing and improving it's customer service.

  8. Daniel Hall
    Meh

    I also

    reported the exact same thing to TAlkTalk over Facebook messenger about a week ago. They didnt seem bothered.

    1. Rich Campbell

      Re: I also

      Yep I hit them on Twitter as well earlier to no reply - it was after that I registered it with the ASA.

  9. HmYiss

    Stop Press

    Ads contain BS.

    In other news, water confirmed wet.

    Here's Tom with the weather.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Stop Press

      It's going to rain.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    TalkTalk are serially dishonest

    A current example of their blatant dishonesty is come contract renewal time. Their website T&C's state that new subscriber deals are available to new and existing customers who have less than 90 days remanining on their existing contract, but try renewing on one, you can't. The live chat drones will deny all knowledge of the deal you're trying to get even though it'll be up on the website. Their usual pitch is just to say "It's not on my system" or that deal just expired and offer you some other deal (I've just spoken to my manager bull...).

    After I had this experience I spoke to two others who had the exact same experience, apparently a hot topic on the forums too so not random one-offs.

  11. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Trollface

    FartFart

    But the ISP has found it difficult to shake off its poor customer service track record.

    May I suggest re-branding the company to "FartFart" due to all the Brain Farts that appear to plague the company.

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