The dispute between controversial online estate agency Emoov and the Advertising Standards Authority is rumbling on.
In the first half of November the ASA issued a statement saying that it had received a complaint from Andrew Stanton, the industry analyst who runs Estate Agency Insights and Strategies.
Stanton claimed that many of the glowing reviews and testimonials on the Emoov website referred to the performance of the agency under its previous operator, Russell Quirk; there were far fewer reviews and testimonials referring to Emoov in recent months, since it was taken over by PropTech firm Mashroom.
The ASA’s statement some weeks ago said the authority had raised the issues with Mashroom which pledged to take action to remedy the inaccuracies.
At the same time Emoov’s chief operating officer - Naveen Jaspal, a former Countrywide and Purplebricks agent - claimed in a separate statement: “The claims made in the recent news were resolved last month, and we worked closely with the ASA to ensure that we complied fully with their request ... We are in the process of rebuilding a fresh new website, using the wonderful reviews we have received from 2019.”
However, it now appears that Jasper’s claims were not accurate and the old reviews still appear on the website; it is not clear to casual readers that they referred to a different company operating the agency before the Emoov name and brand were sold on.
Stanton has made further overtures to the ASA to take action and a spokeswoman for the authority has told Estate Agent Today: “We are in ongoing conversations with Emoov regarding the changes that need to be made, in line with our informal resolution.”
She went on to explain: “If an advertiser refuses to comply, we would refer the matter to our compliance team who would take the necessary steps to ensure the ads were properly amended. In this case we did receive an assurance from the advertiser, and we’re following up to ensure this is fully actioned.”