The Better Business Bureau announced that it has just launched "BBB AdTruth," an online service that allows consumers to complain about ads that they believe contain false claims. The BBB says that its advertising review specialists will then investigate the ads to assess their truthfulness.

BBB AdTruth guides consumers through a series of questions about the advertising, including where they saw it, the claims that were made, and why the consumer believes that the claims are false.

The BBB said that consumer complaints will be sent to the local Better Business Bureau where the advertiser is headquartered. If the BBB staff determines that there is a violation of the BBB Code of Advertising or other rules, the BBB will reach out to work with the advertiser to improve its advertising.

It will be interesting to see whether this consumer complaint tool is widely used by consumers and whether the BBB aggressively follows up on the complaints. If so, this new service has the potential to have significant and far-reaching impact.

{ "Misleading advertising is a huge source of frustration for both consumers and honest businesses in today's marketplace" -- Melissa Trumpower, Executive Director, BBB Institute for Marketplace Trust