When conducting advertising, public relations activities, and other communication activities, SoftBank is careful to consider the accuracy of information concerning the management policies and business description, technologies, products, and services as well as the ethics of the details (sufficient consideration of human rights, environment, confidential information, intellectual property rights, personal information, and other problems). At the same time, we broadly listen to the opinions of society and incorporate them in our business.
When it comes to advertisements and other forms of publicity, we consider advertising ethics and endeavor to display content which complies with the Act Against Unjustifiable Premiums and Misleading Presentations and other applicable laws as well as the “Voluntary Standards and Guidelines Concerning Telecommunications Service Advertising Displays” established by the Telecom Services Promotion Conference business group.
In the Legal, Technology, Marketing, and other departments, we verify the content according to legal compliance, consumer protection, and the customer's perspective while also inquiring with attorneys and other external experts and specialized organizations as needed to verify that the advertising display content is accurate and appropriate.
After a major advertising proposal has been decided, the advertising content including media ethics is verified at the management level by raising the content in a managerial meeting, etc. or by providing individual explanations to executives.
Feedback concerning advertising activities which have already been executed are also accepted by SoftBank Customer Support (inquiries). Moreover, we continuously monitor previously conducted advertising activities by subjecting them to a regular advertising check scheme conducted by an industry organization (Telecom Services Promotion Conference) to verify that there are no legal, guideline-based, or ethical problems with the content.
In this manner, we establish a strict verification process and mechanism for detecting problems. In the unlikely event that a customer, administrative authority, or consumer group, etc. points out a problem with our advertising activities, we change the content.
During fiscal 2020 there were no cases of unjustifiable and misleading representation as stipulated in the Act Against Unjustifiable Premiums and Misleading Presentations resulting in administrative disposition within SoftBank's advertising activities.
In order to continue responsible advertising activities, it is important to improve ethical awareness with respect to advertising displays within the company. At SoftBank, we conduct periodic group training and e-learning regarding advertising display ethics to promote an understanding of the relevant laws, advertising display rules defined by the industry, and internal rules, etc.
Initiatives for sound advertising activities
In addition, in order to upgrade our level of responsible advertising activities, we participate in the “Japan Advertisers Association (JAA)” which aims for the healthy development of advertising activities and feed back the knowledge obtained through discussions with participating companies and leading experts into our advertising activities.