Electronic erotic services Code
This Code supervises all advertising for electronic services proposing erotic services.
This Code concerns advertisement, no matter the form, published in mainstream media. This Code does not concern advertisement for pornographic services published in an adult media or with limited access.
This Code aims at reconciling the freedom of speech with the respect of human dignity, the protection of minors and honest information to the public.
In addition to legal provisions applicable to this sector and to all ARPP Codes, these advertisements, no matter the form, must comply with the follwoing ethical rules:
1. Image and respect of the person
“Marketing communications should not contain statements or audio or visual treatments which offend standards of decency currently prevailing in the country and culture concerned”. (Article 2, ICC Code).
Therefore, advertisement that doesn’t respect, directly or indirectly, decency and dignity requirements must be banned.
a/ Degrading references to specific jobs are forbidden (for example nurses, secretaries , hostesses, doctors, teachers, sexologists, fireman, etc.).
b/ All representations, explicit or implicit, of sexual actions, postures, gestures which in their visual, audio or written expressions can be shocking, must be avoided.
c/ Pornographic and/or vulgar vocabulary is forbidden, even it is used in the name of the service or if it is in a foreign language.
d/ Advertising must avoid references to submission and dependence demeaning human beings.
e/ All lenient presentations of domination or exploitation situations of a person are forbidden.
f/ Advertising must avoid all violent scenes, direct or suggested, and must not incite moral or physical violence.
g/ All references to religions, ethnical belongings, illnesses, physical features or disabilities, associated to sexual fantasies that are likely to harm human dignity are banned.
2. Protection of minors
“Marketing communications should not contain any statement or visual treatment that could have the effect of harming children or young people mentally, morally or physically”. (Article 18 ICC Code).
The respect of that principle implies that:
a/ No references to age are acceptable in advertising, not even in the name of the service (for example: kids, young boy, teenager, schoolchild, etc.).
b/ The use of the term « censored » or any symbol implying a censorship because of the pornographic visuals are not acceptable.
c/ Expressions such as “only for adults”, “forbidden to under 18s” must not be used as claims.
d/ They can be used in an informative way, clearly apart from advertising claims, for services accessible only to adults, in compliance with ethical and legal requirements.
3. Honest information
“Marketing communications should be so framed as not to abuse the trust of consumers or exploit their lack of experience or knowledge. Relevant factors likely to affect consumers’ decisions should be communicated in such a way and at such a time that consumers can take them into account” (Art.3 ICC Code).
a/ The advertisement cannot highlight the possibility to meet other persons in the same region or city if it isn’t actually possible.
b/ When the service is a chat or a dating site, the presence of the professionals, (animators, for example) must be indicated, by any mean to the users of the service, in order to make it clear that they are not in conversation only with the private individuals.
c/ The prices of the services and/or products proposed in the advertisement must be indicated.
The identity of the publisher of the service must also be indicated.
This information must be legible and readable, according to the applicable provisions noted in the ARPP Code « Note and Overlays » and all ethical rules applicable to this sector.
First version, october 1998.