A UK dating site called Veggiedates has been censured by the ASA after admitting that the website was filled with meat-eaters. Veggiedates boasted that it could help single vegetarians and vegans meet up and find relationships. Some of the tag lines the site used were; “meet single vegetarian men and women”, “a trusted UK vegetarian online dating agency” and “all looking for relationships with other vegetarians”.
The dating site came under fire by the Advertising Standards Authority after a complaint came in about the site being misleading for vegetarians and vegans because “the majority of the people listed on the site were not vegetarian or vegan”. Veggiedates attempted to argue that it was one of several dating websites that “share a common database of members” and that it never said that the website was exclusively for vegetarians or vegans.
The ASA’s retort was that the site was aimed and marketed at vegans and vegetarians saying, “Whilst we recognized that the website did not state it was ‘only’ for vegetarians and vegans, we considered in was clearly marketed at vegetarians and vegans by references to vegetarians throughout, such as ‘Find your veggie dates’, ‘Meet single vegetarian men and women’, ‘a trusted UK vegetarian online dating agency’, ‘all looking for relationships with other Vegetarians!’ and ‘Start browsing our selection of vegan and vegetarian singles online today’.”
It is unclear how Veggiedates thought the website were to be perceived with marketing strategies such as the ones mentioned. After all, the website is called Veggiedates. One would think that users who were vegetarian or vegan and looking for a date would go to such a location if they were into the online dating scene. I’m pretty sure that vegetarians and vegans who used the site to find a match would be very upset when they met up with their match at a restaurant and their date ordered a medium-rare steak.
Clearly the website was using false marketing strategies to draw in users and it is abudantly clear that the marketing was misleading. The ASA demanded that the website “no longer imply that it was exclusive to non-meat eaters”, according to Digital Spy. Following the ruling Veggiedates has since changed its tagline on its homepage to say “Single people who lead a healthy lifestyle.”