False advertising has become so common that it is hard to detect. However, the more common forms of false advertising tend to deal with cosmetics, foods, vehicles, air travel and hotel accommodations, and computer equipment, sales and servicing.
Generally speaking, false advertising, or deceptive advertising, is the use of misleading or false statements in ads. Consumers rely on ads to make purchasing decisions, and if the information in those ads is false, they have been mislead; tricked into making a purchase they otherwise would not have considered. Since advertising is so powerful, many government use rules and regulations to control this practice.
The other reference to false advertising is the term, “Truth in advertising.” This refers to the fact that customers have a right to know what they are buying, and that should mean that all the information they need is printed on the label. This is often not the case.
Some of the more common ways to use false advertising involve surcharges and hidden fees people do not find out about until they are buying something, going out of business sales, manipulating equipment standards (common with computer hard drives), the use of oversized packaging to make consumers think they are getting more for less, use of adulterants to increase package weights, use of vague and undefined terms (light, ultra light, organic), and so on.