Verizon Communications has been criticized over competitive tactics before, when it was attacked by cable TV providers for unfairly using information about customers who were changing carriers. Now, the National Advertising Division of the Better Business Bureau is recommending that Verizon change or discontinue some of the claims it makes in its advertising about the FiOS TV viewing experience. After competitor Cablevision Systems complained that Verizon claimed it offered better sound and picture quality, the NAD examined consumer studies provided by Verizon and said the studies were "not sufficiently reliable" to support all of the ad claims, according to a story at Multichannel News.
The NAD said Verizon should modify ad claims such as the statement that FiOS "channels came on quicker" and "the colors were more vivid," among others. However, the group said Verizon's claim to offering "the best TV picture, period," and a testimonial claim about FiOS viewing, "it's the best picture and sound you're ever gonna get. It's insane," are reasonable claims. General hyperbole in advertising remains safe and sound.
Verizon said it will consider the NAD's recommendation as it plans future advertising, but who is forcing it to follow through, and who will determine what following through really means?
- Multichannel News has this report
Verizon was sued by cable TV providers earlier this year
Verizon added 233,000 FiOS TV customers in the third quarter