Advertising oversight mechanism
Advertising Management Information System (AdMIS) (accessible only on the Government of Canada network)
Roles and responsibilities: Non-partisan review process for government advertising
Advertising campaigns with budgets over $250,000 must undergo an external review. Departments may choose to submit campaigns with smaller budgets for review.
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Non-partisan review process
Ads are reviewed against the advertising review criteria by Ad Standards, the not-for-profit organization that administers the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards.
Departments are responsible for ensuring that ads are reviewed internally before submitting them to Ad Standards.
In this section
Two-stage review approach
Ads are reviewed twice – at an early stage of production and before being made public. Departments must plan accordingly to preserve the integrity of the two-stage approach. However, the process is different depending on the cost or time required for production.
Ads with significant production costs or time
Ads that include filming, hired talent, studio time, focus testing, etc., need to be submitted in English or French for an initial review before incurring:
- additional production costs to correct problems identified in the review
- unforeseen delays in planning, production, publishing or broadcasting
- avoidable costs, such as cancellation penalties from media outlets or paying for unused advertising space or time, etc.
Ads with low production costs and presented in their final form
An expedited review can be requested if the English and French ads are both submitted and the head of communications attests in the Advertising Management Information System (AdMIS) that they will not be modified. This allows the ads to automatically advance from the initial to the final review stage.
Requesting a review
To initiate a review, departments upload their campaign material in AdMIS.
Announcements of a purely administrative or operational nature are excluded from the review process. Some examples include:
- public hearings, employment offers, notices of public consultation, requests for tenders or changes to office business hours
- messages to the public regarding urgent matters affecting public health and safety or the environment
Public complaints about partisanship in advertising
Submit a complaint about Government of Canada advertising that you feel is partisan.
Find information on past complaints and the review committee’s findings.
General questions or comments about government advertising that are not related to partisanship can be submitted to Public Services and Procurement Canada.
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