Smith & Smith, a Belron company based in New Zealand, recently ceased
running controversial advertising that a competitor said led consumers
to believe that no cracks could be repaired. The Advertising Standards
Authority’s (ASA) Complaints Board recently ruled in favor of Darrel Hore
of Crack Specialists Ltd., who claimed the ads were misleading.
The Smith & Smith ads warned consumers to have their windshields repaired
before chips became cracks, to avoid having to replace the entire windshield.
Hore, an Ultra Bond licensee, argued that the ads were misleading to consumers,
as New Zealand auto glass standards allow cracks up to 350 mm (approximately
14 inches) to be repaired, as long as they’re outside the driver’s critical
“The advertisement claims that if a windscreen chip turns into a crack
that it cannot be repaired and the windscreen has to be replaced,” says
Hore in his initial complaint. “This is incorrect and under the Windscreen
Standard AS/NZS 2366.2 1999, we are, in fact, allowed to repair cracks
to up to 350 mm outside the critical vision area.”
Smith & Smith argued that though the company does repair windshields,
it does not repair any cracks or chips larger than a 50-cent coin.
“We are not alone in taking a more conservative approach than that allowed
under the Standard,” writes Smith & Smith in its response. “One of
our principal competitors in the vehicle glass repair segment, Novus,
promotes its windscreen repair service by saying that ‘if the damaged
area on your windscreen can be covered over by a credit card, the chances
are very good that it can be repaired.’”
The Complaints Board ruled that the ads violated the Truthful Presentation
Rule of the Advertising Code of Ethics.
Though Hore also argued that the ads were misleading in that they note
that “repairs are free under insurance when they do the repair,” and claimed
that this made it sound as if only repairs completed by Smith & Smith
were covered by insurance, the Complaints Board ruled that the meaning
of this statement was clear.
Jeff Boekstein, group sales and marketing director for Belron, says the
company has ceased running the ads, but is disappointed in the decision.
“We are naturally disappointed in the ASA’s decision but, in any event,
we have stopped running the advertising at issue,” he told AGRRmagazine/glassBYTES.com™.
NWRA Part of Newly Created Global Glass Conservation Alliance
The National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA) has joined a newly-created
organization, the Global Glass Conservation Alliance (GGCA).
The GGCA is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to reducing the energy
impact of glass upon the earth. The GGCA promotes the repair, restoration,
reuse and recycling of all types of flat glass.
Under the new alliance, the NWRA will partner with other entities that
will work in tandem to bring awareness to the public about the benefits
of glass repair, restoration, reuse and recycling. The alliance’s goal
is to reduce the amount of glass that is thrown out each year and to espouse
the benefits of being an environmentally conscious glass consumer.
“The NWRA is committed to repairing, restoring, reusing and recycling
all glass and have committed to this resolve by joining the GGCA,” says
NWRA president Mike Boyle.
“The NWRA will continue to be the organization dedicated to repair first
as the best viable option for windshields, but are proud to be involved
with the GGCA, which will encompass the larger goal of reducing glass
in the landfills,” adds Boyle.
Mock Newest Member of NWRA Board; Mason to Serve as Treasurer
The National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA) board has appointed
Daniel Mock, vice president of operations for Waco, Texas-based Glass
Doctor, to fill the vacancy left by Paul Syfko of Glass Medic America,
whose travel schedule has precluded him from continuing on the board.
In addition, board member Troy Mason, owner of Techna Glass, has taken
over as treasurer for the board.
Finally, the NWRA also has a new director of operations, Wendy Jozwiak.
Jozwiak has worked in association management for the past two years.
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