Comparative advertising is an increasingly popular and useful way of promoting products and in presenting the advertiser’s goods and services as being more attractive than the competitor’s. However, a careful review in this matter reveals that in certain cases, it has been seen that the advertisers infringes the reputed trademarks and use this sought of advertising for competitor‘s product disparagement. Recent judicial decisions in the matters in our country and in United States and European countries reveal that the laws in these countries are quite liberal and motivates comparative advertising to ensure free market . But certain countries are not so liberal in this aspect. This present an opportune moment to review this area of law in an stringent country like China, and this work seeks to outline the current position there.
Advertising is a marketing tool which is used for sales promotion and publicity. It is a process of communication between the owner of the products or services and consumers to make his products familiar to the masses. An advertisement basically exhibits the effectiveness and utility of the existing and future products. It influences the consumer in taking a rational purchase decision. In pursuit of globalization, various multinational companies have come up and established their business which has increased and aggravated the competition amongst the various products and services. Firms have been aggressively and vigorously promoting their product and services than before. In an natural human tendency to exaggerate, the advertisers are now using comparative advertising as an indispensable tool to combat the trade rivalries and fierce competition. A careful literature review in this regard, reveals that, the competitors, while doing comparative advertising disparages the product of his competitor. Product disparagement implies false information about the products and services in intention to discredit denigrate or disparage the products or services of rival competitors. Thus it becomes mandatory to have effective and stringent laws to protect the traders’ rights and promote honest trade practices.
A study of legislation on comparative advertising vis~a~vis product disparagment in various countries of the world, reveals that similar to the Indian legislation, jurisdictions in European Union and U.S.A. also permit comparative advertising, as in these countries it is considered that comparative advertising help educating the consumers with information about all similar products through a swift comparison, assist in making rational decision, motivates competition, and helps prevent monopolies. Conversely, several other countries, notably Germany, the Benelux countries, Italy , China and South Africa nurture the anti-comparative advertising intellectual property law. We have witnessed the tremendous growth of Chinese markets into world econony, as a result the chinese advertising industry has grown by leaps and bounds. The chinese brands have too indulged in product disparagment and trademark infringment while adopting comparative advertising. That is the reason why the authors felt to analyze the regulatory environment governing comparative advertising in China.
Comparative Advertising In Stringent Environment
Author: 1. G.S. Rajpurohit and 2. Puneet Bafna