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Advertisement Board Decisions

Advertisement Board Decisions

Communication Sector

Within the scope of the decision of the Advertisement Board (“Advertisement Board”, “Board”) numbered 2022/4673, it is determined that the tariff named “Redli Fırsat 18GB Sosyal Paket” of the Vodafone Telekomünikasyon A.Ş, which is promoted through “Vodafone Yanımda” application, offers discounted price information for the first three months on the promotion page, but the higher monthly fee information for the remaining months of the tariff is not included on the same page. 

As a result of the assessment made by the Board, it was stated that the promise offered through the advertisements (i) does not reflect the truth, (ii) completely or substantially eliminates the advantages offered by the main promise, and (iii) violates fair competition principles and leads to consumer victimization. In this context, it has been decided that halting the advertisement in question which is contrary to the provisions of the Regulation on Commercial Advertising and Unfair Commercial Practices (“Regulation”) and the Consumer Protection Law (“Law”) no. 6502. 

In the decision 2022/4682 of the Advertisement Board, in the advertisement published by Superonline İletişim Hizmetleri Anonim Şirketi, the phrases “We set up your internet for free in 2 days: When you choose Turkcell Fiber, you will start enjoying fibre internet in your home in 2 days.” It was determined that the statements were used without any exception conditions and created the impression that the installation process would be completed within the specified period under all circumstances, but the subscription process of the consumer who applied could be completed in more than 1 week. 

As a result of the examination, the Board concluded that the promises offered through the advertisements do not reflect the truth, are of a nature to completely or substantially eliminate the advantages provided by the main promise, lead to consumer victimisation and are contrary to the principles of fair competition. In this context, it has been decided that the said promotions are contrary to the provisions of the Regulation and the Law and that Superonline İletişim Hizmetleri Anonim Şirketi shall be imposed a penalty to stop the said advertisements.

In the decision numbered 2022/4237 of the Advertisement Board, in the advertisement published by Turkcell İletişim Hizmetleri Anonim Şirketi, the phrase “*IPhone 13 128 GB phone 10.077,66 TLx3 Months *Added to your Turkcell Invoice *This product is sold with consumer financing.” and when hovering over the information sign, the phrase “*Only Turkcell subscribers can benefit from the instalment opportunity with the financing of Turkcell Finansman A.Ş., provided that the financing request is approved. The specified price is the average monthly instalment amount and the instalments and the total amount to be paid may vary as it is determined according to the instalment date in the financing repayment plan. You can see the financing instalment amount special for you before completing the purchase.” However, it was determined that the price appeared as 10,394.74×3 months when consumers clicked to buy the products, and the price changed to 10,418.24×3 months when the purchase was made after the financing request was approved. As a result of the examination, the Board concluded that the promises offered through the aforementioned advertisements did not reflect the truth, caused consumer victimisation and this situation was contrary to the principles of fair competition. In this context, it was decided that the advertisements subject to the examination were contrary to the provisions of the Law and the Regulation and Turkcell İletişim Hizmetleri Anonim Şirketi was sentenced to stop the aforementioned advertisements.

Within the scope of the Advertisement Board’s decisions numbered 2022/5306 and 2022/4887, it was specified that during promotions conducted by Andromeda Tv Dijital Platform İşletmeciliği Anonim Şirketi via telephone, (i) the D-Smart dealer contacted a TTNET subscriber and offered campaign subscription options by misrepresenting that he/she was calling from Türk Telekom and the consumer was directed to apply for the “Month-to-Month Committed Sales Campaign February 2022” campaign with the acceptance of the consumer “as a result of the said misinformation”, (ii) the first call recording that led the consumer to the subscription process was not submitted, therefore, even though the company had the burden of proof, the company could not disprove the consumer’s claims, (iii) the consumer’s confidence is abused by causing the consumer to subscribe to a campaign which they wouldn’t normally participate in through misleading information, (iv) furthermore, the company used TTNET/Türk Telekom’s name without permission in an effort to gain profit by unfairly benefiting from the reputation of the aforementioned company. As a result of the assessment made by the Board, it was stated that the advertisements (i) are deceiptive and misleading to consumers, (ii) are contrary to the principles of fair competition, (iii) also cause consumers to become a party to a transaction to which they would not be a party under normal circumstances, causes an unfair commercial practice as a result of deceptive negligence. It was therefore decided to halt the advertisements in question that are contrary to the Law and Regulation. 

Social media Influencers And Surreptitious Adversitings

Within the scope of the Advertisement Board’s decisions numbered 2022/5738 and 2022/5742, it was determined that social media influencers (i) tagged the social media accounts of various brands in their posts and directed consumers who clicked on the tags to corporate social media accounts promoting and marketing the relevant brands, (ii) on the other hand, the posts did not contain any advertisement or cooperation phrase, (iii) by directing to products and brands in this way, implicit advertisements were made for brands. As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; it was stated that there was surreptitious advertising on social media accounts of Rachel Araz Kiresepi and Dila Tarkan Doğruer. Therefore, it has been decided that halting the advertisement in question which is contrary to the provisions of the Regulation and the Law. 

In the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/3645, in the posts made from the social media account named “regloloji”, the following statements were made: “Trendyol has a special discount only for my followers, you get 50% discount and 10-15-20TL discount on your orders, half of your meal is on us. LINK BİOda.” and in the image, it has been determined that the statements such as “today I ordered myself a pizza from trendyol with 50% discount. I started a series that I couldn’t start …” were included.” The Board has evaluated that the implicit advertisement of “Trendyol” company is made by directing the followers to the “Trendyol Yemek” link without any advertisement or cooperation phrase. In this context, it has been decided that the promotions subject to the review are contrary to the provisions of the Law and the Regulation and that Saliha Sena Holta, the owner of the reglology account, will be sentenced to stop the aforementioned advertisements in accordance with the Law.

Cosmetic Sector

Within the scope of the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/4024, 2022/3434, 2022/3439, 2022/3435 2022/1005 and 2022/3422, in the promotion of cosmetic product contained statements as below:

  • “Acne and Pimple Remover (…) Provides effective results in treating acne on oily and problematic skin”, 
  • “… effective in the treatment of wrinkles”, 
  • “Your biggest helper for removing sun spots, acne spots, scars, scars, postpartum spots, in short, all skin spots. Makes freckles less noticeable” 
  • “Its anti-inflammatory properties reduce skin redness and restore barrier function for a hydrated complexion.” 
  • “Helps reduce acne scars (…) Helps remove blemishes (…) Reduces bags under eye (…) Eliminates germs that stick to skin pores.” 

According to the Board’s assessment; all cosmetic products subject to the cosmetics legislation should be applied to the external parts of the body and have a temporary effect on the skin, (ii) in this context, the therapeutic and indication statements in the relevant promotions exceed the definition of cosmetic products specified in the relevant legislation and are misleading, (iii) if the products in question are capable of substantiating the claims made in the advertisements, then the products should not be licensed as “cosmetic products” but as “human medicinal product” or “medicines, (iv) It is unlawful under the law to advertise products that could be considered “medicinal products for “human medicinal product ” or “medicines” are stated. Therefore, it was decided to halting the advertisements in question for violating the Regulation, the Law, the Cosmetics Regulation, and the Regulation on Health Declarations of Products Offered for Sale with Health Declarations.

Decisions on the Burden of Proof

Within the scope of the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/55405, it is stated that a comparative performance test on 100% cotton white fabric to demonstrate its ability to extend clothes’ life by up to two times submitted by the Hayat Kimya Sanayi Anonim Şirketi. However, since product comparisons in the advertisement were made with “black-specific” and “color-specific” competitor liquid detergent products, it was decided that the results of the performance test were insufficient to prove the claim in question. Furthermore, it has been determined that the enzyme supplier’s statements used to prove the claims of “Deeper care than other competitive detergents. Gives intense shine. Protects against wear and tear. Purifying effect for all colours and fabrics” are is a qualification of catalogue in which the properties of the raw material are introduced and do not have scientific validity; and that the test results carried out by the company are based on subjective evaluations based on visual detection. Therefore, it has been decided that halting the advertisement in question which is contrary to the provisions of the Regulation and the Law. 

Tourism

In the Advertisement Board’s decision numbered 2022/4546, it was determined that the facility named “Asda Maris Hotel” requested a Tourism Operation Certificate from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. During the inspection of the related application on 18.08.2022, it was detected that the facility has been promoted as a “4 Star Hotel” both in the promotions within the facility and the promotion plate outside the facility, As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; It has been stated that the “4 Star Hotel” promotions for the facility called “Asda Maris Hotel”, which does not have a “4 Star Hotel Tourism Operation or Tourism Investment Certificate” from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, are deceptive and misleading to consumers. In this context, the said promotions are against the provisions of the Law, the Regulation, the Tourism Promotion Law and the Regulation on the Qualifications of Tourism Facilities, and the owner of the facility Özdil Pazarlama Gıda Turizm Ticaret Hayvancılık İthalat ve İhracat Limited Şirketi’s aforementioned advertisements were stopped by the Board’s decision.

2) In its decision numbered 2022/4553, the Advertisement Board stated that although the facility named “Bosfora Pension” has a “Pension” type Tourism Management Certificate from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, it was determined that the facility was promoted as “Hotel Bosfora” on the exterior of the facility during the inspection carried out on 22.08.2022 and it was evaluated that the promotion of “Hotel Bosfora” for the facility in question was deceptive and misleading to consumers. In this context, it has been decided that the said advertisements are contrary to the provisions of the Law, the Regulation, the Tourism Incentive Law and the Regulation on the Qualifications of Tourism Facilities and that the owner of the facility, Haliloğulları İnşaat ve Turizm Sanayi Ticaret Limited Şirketi, shall be sentenced to stop the said advertisements.

Tobacco And Alcohol Industry

In the decision numbered 2022/5757 of the Advertisement Board, it has been determined that in the posters hung in front of the business and in the shop window of the business for the promotion of alcoholic beverages in the business named “Deniz Market” operating in the centre of Edirne province, it was determined that the visuals and prices of alcohol products of various brands were shared and expressions such as “Discount” and “Campaign” were used. The Board, in accordance with the provisions of the legislation in force, it is forbidden to advertise and promote alcoholic beverages in any media, and the brand / price information for various alcoholic beverages in the shop window of the business in question and the posts regarding the discounted sales campaign of various brands violate the relevant legislation, and in this respect, it has been evaluated that the aforementioned posts are disruptive to public health. In this context, it has been decided that the aforementioned promotions are in violation of the Law, Regulation, Regulation on the Procedures and Principles Regarding the Sale and Presentation of Tobacco Products and Alcoholic Beverages, and the provisions of the Spirits and Spirits Excise Law No. 4250, and Küçükuzun Gıda Pazarlama İnş. San. Tic. Ltd. Şti. to suspend the aforementioned advertisements. 

In the decision numbered 2022/4503 of the Board of Advertisement, it has been conducted that the social media account with the address https://www.instagram.com/btmobill/ shared images and promotions of electronic cigarette products regarding the sale of electronic cigarettes, and promoted as “Our electronic cigarette sales continue at full speed. ” As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; it is stated that (i) in the relevant social media account, promotional posts are made using the images of electronic cigarette products whose production, importation and supply to the domestic market are prohibited as per the legislation, (ii) related posts are in the nature of illegal advertisements for cigarettes and electronic cigarette products, all kinds of advertisements for consumers are prohibited by the legislation, and (iii) cigarette consumption, which is harmful to human health and causes addiction, is encouraged because of this advertisement. In this context, since the aforementioned advertisements are against the Law, Regulation, Presidential Decision No. 2149 Concerning the Import of Electronic Cigarettes and Similar Devices, Some Tobacco Products and Products Used in an Imitation Style, Regulation on the Procedures and Principles Regarding the Sale and Presentation of Tobacco Products and Alcoholic Beverages, Law No. 4207 on the Prevention and Control of Harms of Tobacco Products the Board decided to stop Ufuk GÖK – Batıbank Teknoloji’s related advertisements.

Durable Consumer Goods Sector

In the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/5499, it has been determined that the company made a promotion on the website www.trendyol.com.tr as “50% discount on all products” on 15.12.2022, various products were purchased by the consumers however after a while these purchases were cancelled, and the stock information was not included in the advertisements, therefore, the consumers were deceived and mistreated. As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; it was conducted that (i) by inviting consumers to purchase them from the website www.trendyol.com.tr without warning, even though the company is sufficiently informed that it cannot offer the products in question at the specified price or procure it from another place for a reasonable period and quantity so the company has unfair commercial practices, (ii) the said practice is deceptive and misleading to consumers, and (iii) it has the nature of unfair commercial practice and is in violation of the principles of fair competition. In this context, the promotions in question are against the provisions of the Law and Regulation and Board decided to stop Zorluteks Tekstil Tic. and San. Inc.’s aforementioned advertisements. 

Food Sector

In the decision numbered 2022/4089, the Advertising Board, in the advertisements and promotions in the mobile application named “Getiryemek”, “40 TL Gift as you eat with Müdavim. Click for details” and on the page titled “Announcement Detail”, which is directed when the “Click for Details” tab is clicked, “1 order gift for 5 orders! Gift orders from selected restaurants with Restoran Getirsin option are waiting for you!” and at the bottom of the page, the conditions for participation in the campaign are explained; the main promise of the campaign is stated as “1 order gift for 5 orders from Getiryemek” and “Gift orders from selected restaurants with Restoran Getirsin option are waiting for you!”. The Board has determined that (i) the gift order right offered in the main promise of the campaign is characterised by expressions such as “restaurant discount”, “earned discount”, “discount amount” and “discounted order gain” in the conditions of participation in a way that completely eliminates the advantage provided by the main promise and contains inconsistency and contradiction with the main promise, (ii) “The discount amount you will earn within the scope of this campaign is the average of the total amount you will pay in 5 orders you will place, and this amount can be a maximum of 40 TL. “, the benefit provided within the scope of the gift order right is limited to the average of the total amount paid in the previous 5 orders and this amount is limited to a maximum of 40 TL, not as a gift by “Getiryemek” by covering the order price, (iii) “Getiryemek” does not give consumers a gift of food order as promised in the advertisements, but the sixth order placed after 5 orders can be purchased at a discount of 40 TL, therefore, the advertisement in question is likely to disrupt the economic behaviour of the average consumer, and (iv) it is considered to be deceptive and misleading to consumers. In this context, it has been decided that the advertisements subject to the review are contrary to the provisions of the Law and the Regulation and that Getir Perakende Lojistik Anonim Şirketi will be imposed an administrative fine of 155.712-TL (one hundred and fifty-five thousand seven hundred and twelve Turkish Liras) and the suspension of the aforementioned advertisements. 

Health Sector

In the decision of the Advertising Board numbered 2022/742, the advertisements published by the Dünyagöz Hospital on the URL address https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=diovSZCWHgU were stated as follows “We export eye health to 6 different continents of the world, we provide foreign currency inflow to our country by serving 110,000 patients from 160 countries annually, we are the ‘first’ in Turkey and the ‘only’ in the world with more than 60,000,000 successful treatments in 26 years, we offer more than 500 treatment procedures with our FDA approved technology and we distribute healing… With our eye hospitals in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Azerbaijan, we have made agreements with the public and private insurance companies of the countries where we are located, we have opened up to the world by providing eye health services to the citizens of our country and neighboring countries and we are proud to be awarded with Turkey’s Top 500 Service Exporters Certificate of Achievement… What more could we ask for! We are growing together with you; thank you Turkey!”. As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; it was stated that the said statements (i) impose a commercial appearance on the work of the organization operating in the field of health, create demand and exceed the limit of information and promotion permitted for health institutions in the relevant legislation and (ii) have the nature of “advertisement” which is prohibited by the relevant legislation. In this context, it was decided that the advertisements in question were in violation of the Law, the Regulation, the Medical Deontology Regulation, the Regulation on Private Hospitals and that Dünya Göz Hastanesi Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş. was sentenced to stop the said advertisements. In addition, (i) within the scope of the Board’s decision dated 04.05.2021, it was decided that the advertisements published on the relevant company’s website www.dunyagoz.com and social networking account www.instagram. com website and the social networking account on www.instagram.com were in violation of the applicable legislation and it was decided to suspend the aforementioned advertisements and impose an administrative fine, (ii) however, considering that the advertisements in violation of the legislation continued to be made after the decision of the Board, it was decided that the fine to be imposed on the aforementioned advertisements pursuant to the Law shall be five times the administrative fine for the year 2022 (155.712×5)=778.560-TL (Seven hundred and seventy-eight thousand five hundred sixty Turkish Liras). 

In the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/4619, the page with the user name ‘tanguzelliksalonu’ belonging to Tan Beauty Salon on the social networking platform www.instagram.com dated 20.10. 2022 dated 20.10. 2022, it has been determined that there are promotions that medical procedures such as ‘tattoo, acne treatment, cellulite treatment, blemish treatment, acne treatment, comedone treatment, hair mesotherapy, prp, dermapen’ are also applied by the organisation, as well as images of before and after the application of medical procedures. The Board concluded that (i) with the Provisional Article 5 of the Regulation on Private Health Institutions for Outpatient Diagnosis and Treatment, beauty salons were removed from the status of health institutions, (ii) medical procedures that must be performed by a physician are prohibited to be performed in beauty salons, (iii) in this context, the establishment, which does not operate in the field of health, was not included in the promotions subject to review, by listing the names of various medical treatment methods that should be applied by physicians and are not allowed to be applied in beauty salons, (iii) however, the medical procedures in question should be applied under the control of a doctor and within health institutions, and (iv) the promotion of such medical procedures even by authorised persons is prohibited by the legislation. In this context, it has been decided to block access to the page with the user name ‘tanguzelliksalonu’ and URL address “https://www.instagram.com/tanguzelliksalonu/” by evaluating the fact that the advertiser did not respond to the information and document request letter, the fact that the posts on the ‘tanguzelliksalonu’ page of the organisation are old dated, and the imposition of a penalty for Tan Beauty Salon to stop the aforementioned advertisements. 

Tech Sector

In the decision of the Advertisement Board numbered 2022/5191, it was determined that the logo and name of Apple Technology and Sales Limited Company was used in the visuals of the website www.appleturkiye.com, which belongs to the company subject to the complaint. As a result of the assessment made by the Board; (i) although there is no commercial relationship between the company and Apple Technology and Sales Limited Company, the promotions and commercial practices created the impression that the company is a branch of the said company, (ii) the company’s website www.appleturkiye. com, which belongs to the company, (iii) however, the company does not have any connection, distributorship, authorized service or dealership agreement with the said company, (iv) the name of the company is used unfairly and consumers are deceived, and (v) therefore, the advertisements in question are misleading and contrary to the principles of fair competition. In this context, it has been decided that the advertisements in question are contrary to the provisions of the Law and the Regulation and that Yusuf İslam Bayazıt shall be sentenced to stop the aforementioned advertisements. 

Aviation Sector 

In the decision numbered 2022/5719 of the Advertising Board, it was stated on the website of Pegasus Hava Tasimaciliği A.S. with the address https://www.flypgs.com/ that “You can make your ticket change and refund transactions on flypgs.com and mobile application, from the step of my travels/ticket transactions. Pegasus call center is available 24/7, whenever you need it. Wherever you are in the world, you can easily perform every transaction related to your travel from the call center. Below are the numbers you can reach our Ticket Hotline from Turkey and abroad: TURKEY 0888 228 12 12* Our 0888 228 12 12 12 number for all users (Türk Telekom Mobile, Türk Telekom Home Phone, Turkcell, Vodafone) the charging period (including taxes) is calculated in seconds and DK 1.5 / TL will be reflected on your invoice by your operator. TURKEY – Toll-Free Line 0850 399 17 01 ** Our BolBol members can contact our call center toll-free at 0850 399 17 01 to submit their requests regarding our BolBol membership program or for flight changes, cancellations, additional service / service purchases. Our call center is free of charge for domestic calls, calls made from abroad are charged at the relevant country operator tariff. For flight cancellations and flight time changes due to operational reasons, you can make your reservation change or cancellation / refund transactions by calling our hotline 0850 250 67 02.” As a result of the evaluation made by the Board; within the scope of the information and documents submitted by the company regarding the fact that the call center service offered by the company is possible with a paid call, it has been stated that there is no element contrary to the provisions of the Advertising Legislation in the matter subject to the complaint. In this context, it has been decided that the promotions in question are not contrary to the provisions of the Law and Regulation.

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