A Bucks-based broadband provider is taking on telecoms giant BT as they lodge a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Swish Fibre's claim objects to the use of the term “fibre broadband” in the marketing and advertising of BT’s broadband products which include copper cable across the crucial last leg of the journey into the home.

In the summer, before filing their claim to the ASA, Swish Fibre released a series of local marketing and advertising campaigns using the term “Fake Fibre” to call out slower and less reliable part-fibre services which still use slow copper lines to connect homes from a street cabinets.

Swish received a complaint about their initial campaign from BT who contacted the ASA to dispute Swish’s “Fake Fibre” phrasing,who responded by launching a “censored” version of their posters.

Alistair Goulden, CMO & Director Swish Fibre, said: “When BT use the word fibre to describe their copper-fibre FTTC networks, I say that you can’t call a vegan sandwich a vegan sandwich if it’s got 10% or even just 1% meat in it.

"Copper reliant FTTC networks cannot provide download speeds much above 80 Mbps and upload speeds of 20 Mbps.

"In contrast, full fibre’s 100% fibre-optic cables have the capability to offer up to 10,000Mbps today and potentially even faster download and upload speeds in the future.”

In August 2019, the ASA for Ireland issued guidance that “fibre” should only describe full fibre networks and that "part-fibre" should be used to describe part-fibre networks with France and Italy have issued similar guidance.

Swish remain have said they remain "vigilant" in asking the ASA to review its existing guidance now and limit “fibre” to describe only full fibre broadband and require part-fibre broadband to be described as “part-fibre”.

In 2017, fellow broadband provider CityFibre challenged the ASA on the matter but the case was dismissed by the courts.

Four years later Swish say: "the landscape is vastly different in the wake of the pandemic and with an explosion of Full Fibre network deployment across the UK, Swish Fibre are now rekindling the fight by pledging to educate the nation on Fake Fibre once and for all and reverse years of misleading advertising."