Welcome to PetForums

Join thousands of other pet owners and pet lovers on the UK's most popular and friendly pet community and discussion forum.

Sign Up

New minimum standards for online animal advertising sites

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Spellweaver, Sep 8, 2013.


  1. Spellweaver

    Spellweaver PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    Messages:
    9,038
    Likes Received:
    2,024
    Found this piece of news today:

    "Today sees the launch of a set of Minimum Standards for websites offering pets for sale. These standards have been created to act as a safeguard for both animals and members of the public, and act as guidance for both sellers and buyers. The standards have been devised by a group of animal welfare charities, collectively known as the Pet Advertising Advisory Group (PAAG), which the Kennel Club is part of."
    Animal charities launch Minimum Standards for UK websites with Defra backing


    And these are the standards:



    "MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR ONLINE CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING WEBSITES

    Websites must:

    run automated checks for ‘blacklisted’ words/terms such as banned breeds and filter for misleading or inappropriate adverts
    require all vendors to include a recent photograph of the animal that they are advertising and monitor for suspicious usage of images.
    require that all adverts display the age of the animal advertised. No pet should be advertised for transfer to a new owner before it is weaned and no longer dependent on its parents.
    permanently ban vendors – on a three strikes and you’re out basis – who attempt to post illegal adverts, and take down illegal/inappropriate adverts within 12 working hours of notification
    ensure that every view item page includes prominent links to PAAG advice on buying and selling a pet (and specific advice for commonly advertised species), including “pop ups”
    label clearly on each ad whether it is a private sale, commercial sale or from a rescue/rehoming centre
    not include adverts for farmed animals or adverts specifying that the animal is to be used for working, hunting, or guarding in the pet section
    monitor for multiple mobile/telephone numbers and email addresses in private sales and investigate and potentially ban frequent/repeat breeders. ‘Frequent’ is defined as the same vendor offering a third different animal in a twelve month period.
    ban adverts of live vertebrate animals as food
    ban adverts offering stud animals, animals in season or animals ‘for rent’ or ‘loan’ in pet section. Note that adverts offering horses or donkeys for loan are acceptable
    ban adverts offering pregnant animals for sale
    ensure that no pets are advertised for swapping with other pets, services or goods
    ensure that species scheduled by the Dangerous Wild Animals Act are clearly marked as such and make clear to vendors that it is an offence to offer a species covered by EU Wildlife Trade Regulations Annex A and listed by CITES for sale without a valid Article 10 Certificate. Non-human primates should not be offered for sale.
    exclude any advert where there is a reasonable concern for the health and welfare of the animal involved
    provide a clearly visible function for purchasers to report illegal or inappropriate adverts
    ensure that no live vertebrates are advertised for sale as deliverable through the postal system, national or international
    require all vendors to state the country of residence from which the animal is being sold
    require all commercial vendors to provide Local Authority licence information when submitting an advertisement

    These minimum standards are recommended by PAAG and endorsed by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs."
    Minimum Standards |



    Well, it's a start. Personally, as this is DEFRA endorsed, I would like to see some kind of punishment (fines, closing down etc) for non-compliant websites, but the PAAG seem to think that it is enough that the animal-buying public will move away from websites that aren't PAAG compliant:

    " How will you ensure that websites comply?

    The cooperation of websites is key to the success of the PAAG minimum standards. We feel that the best way to ensure that websites comply is through public demand for higher standards and better adverts. As the pet owning public become more aware of the standards they can begin to move away from those sites which do not insist on minimum standards for the adverts they host. It is hoped that this will lead to a decrease in traffic to the worst sites which should provide an incentive to improve and ensure that all adverts comply with the PAAG minimum standards.
    "

    FAQ |


    I'm not so sure about that. I suspect that many people won't even know about PAAG compliance (and what it means/what non-compliance means) unless this is publicised much more widely.

    What does everyone else thnk?
     
  2. Burrowzig

    Burrowzig PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    17,915
    Likes Received:
    11,504
    It's a considerable improvement over the situation up until now.
     
  3. havoc

    havoc PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2008
    Messages:
    12,999
    Likes Received:
    10,043
    I like the idea of standards but would like clarification on the odd thing. What exactly is
    to mean? Do they mean different species or would a litter of pups or kittens count as more than three different animals?
     
  4. lostbear

    lostbear Bear right at Newcastle . . .

    Joined:
    May 29, 2013
    Messages:
    13,406
    Likes Received:
    5,104
    I wondered about that. Or would three litters from different breeds be acceptable, but not three litters of the same breed? Seems a bit confused to me - a few loopholes that the unscrupulous will exploit.

    As OP has suggested, too - this seems to be pretty much self-regulation. There don't seem to be any penalties for breaking the standards. I have no faith that people who are prepared to breed puppies and kittens in vile and unhealthy conditions are going t take notice of a (practically) voluntary code. Plus, who is going to police/enforce it?

    It's a start, but there's a long way to go, I think.
     
  5. havoc

    havoc PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2008
    Messages:
    12,999
    Likes Received:
    10,043
    If they actually mean this
    Then there are a lot of perfectly good breeders going to be banned. Why has the KC agreed to a ban on 'repeat' breeders advertising?
     
  6. Goblin

    Goblin PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Messages:
    9,334
    Likes Received:
    5,937
    Who's actually vetting all these adverts? Last I saw it's a team of volunteers which is totally unworkable. You need to stop the adverts before they are published, not after and they are complained about. Only way to do that is a complete change to normal working procedures, where adverts are only published after being vetted, it can't be tacked on. Worked for one free ad paper at one point which did vet all adverts. IT systems were built around the process.

    For comparison, look at sites dealing with copyrighted material. Yes, studios complain, something gets removed, people get banned but how easy is it to get hold of illegal things even if not trying to bypass things?

    It's a start though even if it's simply an acknowledgement of the problem.
     
  7. lostbear

    lostbear Bear right at Newcastle . . .

    Joined:
    May 29, 2013
    Messages:
    13,406
    Likes Received:
    5,104
    In this day and age this shouldn't be such a difficult thing to do. However, I suspect that the whole thing is purely cosmetic. The advertising sites have no reason to ban advertisers. I think that they want to appear to behave ethically, but without actually doing anything (especially anything that will affect their revenue.)
     
  8. Spellweaver

    Spellweaver PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2009
    Messages:
    9,038
    Likes Received:
    2,024
    This is why I would like some "teeth" behind the standards. Either these sites need regulating, or they don't. I think we all agree that they do - and as DEFRA obviously does too, why isn't DEFRA promoting legislation instead of merely backing this banding together of a group of animal charities? Then there could be some sort of punishment levied (fines etc) to back up non-compliance with the standards - hitting the sites in their pocket will do more to force them into complying than the amorphous and unlikely threat of people ceasing to use their site.
     
  9. lil muppet

    lil muppet PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2008
    Messages:
    2,915
    Likes Received:
    35
    btw those guidlines say no non human primates.... so you can sell your children if you like on the pet pages!
     
  10. Goblin

    Goblin PetForums VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Messages:
    9,334
    Likes Received:
    5,937
    Difficult, technically it's not but change in cultural practices and enforcement by IT.. difficult ;) Can't "publish" unless vetted.. let's simply work around that as I need it published now.. Vetting itself, you need to store who reviews which advert especially if money is involved somewhere. You need to know why X advert wasn't published. The workflow of the advert needs to be tracked. Is it a case of advert is published or deleted or is there a process for vetting, rejection, modification, vetting again and publication. How about if an advert is edited, what % of change needs to be made before it needs to be reviewed again and is it taken offline between edit and republication? Where do the adverts come from? Are adverts brought in from other advertising authorities through a standard "language" such as something called XML via a central system? What are the rules for these adverts and transfers? What about rescues and the capability to post adverts from rescues where they only have to fill in details and send that information to several free ad sites. I could go on but there are a lot of considerations. Cosmetically you can simply bolt something on. If you want something which really works...
     
    #10 Goblin, Sep 8, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2013
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice