ASA DIRECTIVE image 27-02-17.jpg
The Advertising Standards Authority has issued new guidelines relating to adverts for auctions and to print catalogues.

Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

The move comes as a response to new guidelines from the Advertising Standards Authority issued at the end of last year and it pertains to adverts in Antiques Trade Gazette and to print catalogues.

The company will also contact auctioneers directly by email to communicate changes it is making to its online auction platform

ATG’s guidance - published in this week’s issue of Antiques Trade Gazette - is not a mandatory requirement. Its purpose is to help auctioneers take appropriate steps when determining how best to comply with the authority’s guidelines. It states:

On December 21st 2016 the Advertising Standards Authority (“ASA”) issued new guidelines on how auction houses should present mandatory fees and charges when referring to guide prices.

The new guidelines require non-optional and optional fees to be made clear where estimates are published – visit for full details.

Auction Technology Group has been in discussions with the Committee of Advertising Practice (“CAP” - the Advertising Standards Authority sister body) with regard to how these new guidelines impact, advertising in Antiques Trade Gazette and printed catalogues.

CAP has given ATG advice on how to implement the new guidelines, the result of which for Antiques Trade Gazette and printed catalogues is presented here. The changes being made to will be communicated via email to auctioneers later this week.

CAP has made it clear that its advice does not bind CAP or the ASA. Until precedent is set, the exact interpretation of the guidelines will not be confirmed. CAP has made it clear that until there is a complaint and CAP makes a ruling on this complaint, no precedent is set.

We at ATG believe that our interpretation of the guidelines is reasonable and demonstrates full cooperation with the ASA and CAP.

However, as precedent has not been set, we cannot guarantee that our interpretation proves to be acceptable. It is for individual companies to decide how to incorporate these guidelines and take legal advice as required.


The text is accompanied by an example of an advert and a sample page from a print catalogue to show how the fees and charges can be displayed.

To prevent every advertisement having to include a full table of Artist’s Resale Right (ARR) charges, Antiques Trade Gazette is publishing the table once in each issue – within its Auction Calendar section – and each advertisement in the newspaper that includes lots that could incur ARR can refer readers to it.

You can download for free a pdf of Auction Technology Group’s guidance including the example pages.