Skit creators, social media influencers, and bloggers must obtain permission from the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria (ARCON) before using their platforms to promote any goods or services.
This is in accordance with the guidelines of the Nigerian Code of Advertising Practice and the ARCON Act No. 23 of 2022, according to a public notice released by ARCON on Monday.
The agency further stated that anyone found infringing the Act would face penalties and legal action.
According to ARCON, enforcing the Act’s compliance became crucial in response to complaints it received about the unrestrained marketing communications, advertising, and skit-making activities of celebrities, influencers, content creators/producers, bloggers, and vloggers on digital/online media platforms.
In a notification signed by its Director-General, Olalekan Fadolapo, ARCON explained the problems with advertisements promoted by digital influencers.
- “Most of the advertisements exposed by this group are not only unethical with unverified claims and misinformation, but also in violation of the Nigerian Code of Advertising Practice.
- “By this public notice, brand owners, digital agencies, secondary digital media space owners (i.e. bloggers, vloggers, influencers, comedians, skit makers, etc), and other advertising stakeholders in the digital online media space are advised to obtain pre-exposure approval of all advertisements, advertising, and marketing communications in accordance with the Nigerian Code of Advertising Practice and the ARCON Act No. 23 of 2022.
- “ARCON will take all necessary actions including sanctions and prosecution of violators of the provisions of the Act to ensure compliance.”
In case you missed it: Earlier in October, ARCON filed a lawsuit in the Abuja division of the Federal High Court against Meta incorporated, the company behind Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp, as well as its representative AT3 Resources Limited. ARCON claimed that the social media platform’s continued exposure of unscreened advertisements had resulted in the federal government losing money.
In the lawsuit, the apex regulatory body for Nigeria’s advertising ecosystem is seeking N30 billion in sanctions for the “violation of the advertising laws and loss of revenue as a result of Meta’s continued exposure of unapproved adverts on its platforms.”