Supreme Court Directive Mandates Self-Declaration Certificates for Advertisements


In a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court of India recently directed every advertiser and advertising agency to submit a self-declaration certificate confirming that their advertisements do not make misleading claims and comply with all relevant regulatory guidelines before broadcasting or publishing. This directive stems from the case of Indian Medical Association vs Union of India. 

To enforce this directive, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has issued comprehensive guidelines outlining the procedure for obtaining these certificates, which became mandatory from June 18, 2024, onwards. This move is expected to significantly impact advertisers, especially those using deepfakes generated by Generative AI (GenAI) on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.

The use of deepfakes in advertisements has been a growing concern. 

In a previous op-ed titled “Urgently needed: A law to protect consumers from deepfake ads,” the rising menace of deepfake ads making misleading or fraudulent claims was highlighted, emphasizing the adverse effects on consumer rights and public figures.

A survey conducted by McAfee revealed that 75% of Indians encountered deepfake content, with 38% falling victim to deepfake scams, and 18% directly affected by such fraudulent schemes. Alarmingly, 57% of those targeted mistook celebrity deepfakes for genuine content.

The new guidelines aim to address these issues by requiring advertisers to provide bona fide details and final versions of advertisements to support t

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