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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    3

    Question What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    Hello,

    I've been wondering for a long time whether or not this commercial by Time Warner - strongly emphasizing they offer free HD - would be considered false advertising.

    In all of TWC's commercials, they strongly emphasize that they offer free on demand, and free HD programming (since its the one way they outshine their competitor). If you watch the commercial below, you will see what I mean by 'strongly emphasize'.
    They also put a lot of emphasis on their on demand services being free as well.

    Anyways, I've noticed that when I order movies on demand from them, there is a surcharge for ordering it in Hi-definition (as opposed to standard definition).
    I noticed this about a year ago when I looked at my statement and saw:
    1/10: Ironman $4.00
    1/11: Ironman HD $5.00
    As an academic question, would you consider this false advertising? And if so, would it qualify as good class action lawsuit?


    "Fact: Time Warner HD is free."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    Are you deeming "on demand" to have exactly the same meaning as "pay per view"? Do you believe they can't offer pay per view movies in HD - that due to the commercial all HD content must be free?

  3. #3

    Default Re: What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    Didn't watch the ad, but "free on demand, and free HD programming "

    Means to me they can offer ONE on demand movie and ONE HD channel for free and charge whatever they want for the rest. It doesn't say ALL HD programming is free.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    Thank you for the feedback

    I chose my words poorly in the last post and was trying to be descriptive of the problem rather than precise. I'll endeavor to be more careful in the future.

    The language Time Warner uses when referring to the paid portion of their on demand service is: "movies on demand" - not pay per view. Actually, Pay Per View is a catch phrase that Time Warner intentionally avoids using.
    How does Movies On Demand differ from traditional Pay-Per-View?
    The difference is that PPV events start at a particular time and you watch them straight through, as if they were a regular program. With Movies on Demand, you can restart it, pause, rewind and you have up to 24 hours to watch the program.
    The question I meant to ask in the last post is: would an ad where Time Warner explicitly states "with Time Warner, you get HD & on demand programming free. . .Time Warner, the home of free HD"be considered false advertising given the ensuing invoice?

    Movies On Demand

    1/10: Ironman $4.00
    1/11: Ironman HD $5.00
    @mittens: I posted the video it is the closest thing to a slanderous attack against a competitor I've ever seen (outside an election year of course.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,906

    Default Re: What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    When you choose to rent a movie through your cable service, and click that you agree to pay $4 or $5 for the movie you have chosen to rent, you have no plausible argument that the service should have been free because of a commercial that says you get certain 'free on demand' movies with your subscription. You aren't even trying to make the case that anything about the various screens you had to click through were confusing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    111

    Default Re: What Constitutes False Advertising in a Commercial

    Does the fine print say new customers only? Does it say after so many months you will have to begin paying? Also TWC DOES have free on demand, just not their movies.

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