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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Congress Passes Restore Online Shoppers' Confidence Act - Alert -  12/23/2010


On December 15, the House of Representatives passed the "Restore Online Shoppers' Confidence Act" (the Act). The Act regulates how merchants may sell certain marketing programs online by prohibiting certain "post transaction" offers as well as restricting certain "negative option" offers.


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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Proposed Privacy Framework Sparks Action And Debate - Alert -  12/16/2010

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently issued its long-awaited preliminary staff report proposing guidance on consumer privacy and data collection practices for businesses (the Framework). The FTC issued the report amidst its concerns that innovations in technology have changed the practices and expectations of consumers, and the existing approach of businesses to privacy must adapt.

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GAMASUTRA: Video Game Regulation and the Supreme Court: Schwarzenegger v. Entertainment Merchants Association - Published Article -  11/01/2010

By: S. Gregory Boyd

Attorney Greg Boyd takes a detailed look at the arguments in the upcoming Supreme Court case on First Amendment issues as regards video games, and then analyzes the possible reasons SCOTUS accepted the case and what outcomes may arise from it.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Newly Formed Digital Advertising Alliance Announces Self-Regulatory Program For Online Behavioral Advertising - Alert -  10/08/2010

On October 4, 2010, the Digital Advertising Alliance (DAA) – a joint project of the American Association of Advertising Agencies, the American Advertising Federation, the Association of National Advertisers, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and the Interactive Advertising Bureau – announced the launch of a cross-industry program for self-regulation of online behavioral advertising.


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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Industry Shift In The Clearance Of Comparative Claims Made In Print Advertisements - Alert -  10/07/2010

In contrast to the major television networks, the review and clearance process for advertising disseminated via print publications has been virtually nonexistent. Print media has traditionally displayed an inclination to accept most advertisements that are submitted, with the exception of lewd, illegal and objectionable content. Recently, however, there has been an increase in self-regulation of print media, which is likely to have a significant impact on advertisers and their agencies.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Releases Proposed Revisions To Green Guides And Seeks Comments - Alert -  10/07/2010

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) just issued proposed revisions to its Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims (Green Guides). The revised Green Guides update the current Guides to make them easier for businesses to understand and also provide new guidance on claims that were not previously covered. The FTC is accepting comments on the revised Green Guides until December 10, 2010.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Brings Action Against PR Agency For Misleading Online Endorsements - Alert -  09/16/2010

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently announced a settlement with Reverb Communications,Inc.(Reverb), a public relations agency in the videogame industry,and its sole owner,Tracie Snitker (Snitker).The settlement resolves claims that Reverb and Snitker engaged in deceptive advertising by having employees pose as ordinary consumers and post game reviews on iTunes.The FTC’s action is the first brought against bloggers since the FTC revised its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (Guides).

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Answers Frequently Asked Questions About Endorsement Guides - Alert -  07/15/2010

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently published answers to a series of frequently asked questions (FAQs) about its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (Guides). The FAQs answer the most common inquiries the FTC has received from advertisers, ad agencies, bloggers and others since issuing the revised Guides in October 2009.

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Washington Legal Foundation - The Legal Backgrounder: “Enhanced” FCC Regulation Of Product Placement Would Breach Free Speech Rights - Published Article -  04/09/2010

By: Joseph Lewczak and Anne DiGiovanni

Michael J. Fox’s character ordering a Pepsi in the movie Back to the Future. Oreo cookies being eaten and discussed throughout an episode by the cast of Seventh Heaven. A character on The Office going to work at a Staples office supply store. Product placement is ever-evolving in television and
movies. With the infiltration of alternative viewing methods such as TiVo, Hulu.com, and illegal downloading, the YouTube generation of viewers is much less persuaded by advertisements in the traditional television programming format. Advertisers and entertainment content producers have
responded over the last decade with product placement,1 whereby advertisers pay to have their products subtly, or not so subtly, included and often featured in entertainment content.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FDA Proposes To Amend Its Regulations Concerning Direct-To-Consumer (DTC) Prescription Drugs - Alert -  04/09/2010

On March 29, 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a notice proposing to amend its regulations concerning DTC prescription drug advertisements by implementing standards that the FDA would consider in determining whether the major statement in these advertisements is presented in a manner that is clear, conspicuous and neutral as required by the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act (the Act) as amended by the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 (the FDAAA).

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Seeks Comments On Children’s Online Privacy Protections - Alert -  04/08/2010

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) seeking comments on the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act Rule (COPPA Rule) should be updated in response to evolving technology and changes in the way children use and access the Internet.

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Promo Magazine: Quiznos/Subway Settlement Poses Legal Threat to Future UGC Promos - Published Article -  03/23/2010

By: Joseph Lewczak

Quiznos and Subway recently settled their longstanding dispute involving the Quiznos vs. Subway TV Ad Challenge user generated content promotion and other advertising created by Quiznos for its Double Meat Campaign. The settlement came quickly after the court in the matter issued a decision denying Quizno's motion for summary judgment. The negative decision for Quiznos could have far reaching consequences for future UGC promotions, and sponsors should now carefully consider what type of content they ask users to submit.

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PRWeek: PR Agency Owners, Execs Must Be Mindful of Unexpected 401(k) Risk - Published Article -  03/19/2010

By Michael C. Lasky

Many PR firms sponsor the ever-popular 401(k) plan, aimed at helping employees save money for a financially secure retirement. However, PR agency owners and executives are often surprised to learn they may be exposed to certain 401(k) financial risks that extend beyond financial-market risks.

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FeedFront Magazine: Implications of FTC Endorsement Guidelines - Published Article -  01/01/2010

By: Gary Kibel

On October 5th, the Federal TradeCommission (“FTC”) announced revisions to its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials (“Guides”). As the most significant changes in almost 30 years, the regulators had a lot of catching up to do.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Compliance Date For Massachusetts’ Data Security Regulations May Not Extend Past March 1, 2010 - Alert -  11/19/2009

Now is the time for businesses to ensure that they will be in compliance with Massachusetts data security regulations come March 2010.


Brandweek // NAD: The Plug Stops Here - Press Mention - 11/01/2009

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Publishes Final Guides Governing Endorsements And Testimonials - Alert -  10/06/2009

Advertisers should be proactive in their response to the revised Guides by establishing policies and procedures that respond to the FTC’s changes, particularly with respect to new media, such as blogs and other consumer-generated media.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> New Maine Marketing Law Is Likely Unconstitutional - Alert -  09/22/2009

On September 9, 2009, The United States District Court of Maine ruled that the Maine marketing law, The Act to Prevent Predatory Marketing Practices Against Minors, is likely unconstitutional.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> New Maine Law Restricts Marketing to Minors - Alert -  08/20/2009

Maine recently enacted a law that restricts the collection of healthrelated and personal information from minors and effectively eliminates the ability of marketers to use this information. The Act to Prevent Predatory Marketing Practices Against Minors (the Act) takes effect on September 12, 2009. The ultimate effect of this new law will require marketers to significantly alter their practices in the state of Maine.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising Released by Top Trade Groups - Alert -  08/10/2009

In July, four key advertising trade associations announced new self-regulatory guidelines which are intended to address consumer privacy concerns and increase transparency in connection with online behavioral advertising.


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New York Law Journal: Non-Traditional Advertising During Economic Turbulence - Published Article -  06/18/2009

By: Joy Wildes and Brooke Erdos Singer

In the current economic crisis, many companies have lower budgets with which to advertise their products or services. Although the full impact of the recession on advertising and marketing spending has yet to be seen, insiders and industry analysts are predicting further decreases in advertising spending in newspapers, magazines, TV and radio with a concurrent rise in spending and usage in non-traditional media.

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DTC Perspectives: The FDA and Search Engines - Published Article -  06/01/2009

By: Stuart Lee Friedel and Michael Peroff, Co-Founder/Managing Partner, Strategic Domain, Inc.

After the FDA’s recent batch of warning letters addressing sponsored links, the reaction by the majority of pharma companies was to withdraw these text ads. While hoping for further direction from the agency - which may or may not be forthcoming - marketers are now considering options for using brand references in text ads.

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Advertising, Marketing and Promotions Alert >> The FTC Red Flags Rule On Identity Theft: It May Apply To Your Business - Alert -  05/14/2009

Identity theft is an issue that concerns every consumer. However, most businesses consider identity theft an issue for others to worry about in a commercial context, such as credit reporting agencies, banks, credit card companies and other traditional financial institutions.


Brandweek//New FTC Asserts Itself - Press Mention - 04/27/2009

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> FTC Updates Online Behavioral Advertising Principles - Alert -  03/04/2009

Last month, the Federal Trade Commission issued a long-awaited update (titled “FTC Staff Report: Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising”) to its online behavioral advertising principles originally issued in December 2007.

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Advertising, Marketing & Promotions Alert >> PhRMA Amends Voluntary Guidelines on DTC Advertising - Alert -  02/10/2009

Last December, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) announced that it had revised, and thereby strengthened, its voluntary guidelines for members relating to direct to consumer (DTC) advertising, PhRMA Guiding Principles, Direct to Consumer Advertisements About Prescription Medicines (the Guiding Principles).

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Journal of Sponsorship: Branded Entertainment: The Old is New Again and More Complicated Than Ever - Published Article -  02/01/2009

By: James L. Johnston

Some in the media would have us believe that product placement is some new and perhaps dangerous development in US television. Yet the practice of brands securing product placements, sponsoring radio and television programming, and integrating their brands and products into programming, is nearly as old as electronic media itself. From The Jell-O Program starring Jack Benny to The Johnson Wax Program with Fibber McGee and Molly, the very start of radio was dominated by sponsored programming and in-programme product mentions.

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The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel: Widgets in Online Marketing Campaigns - A Balancing Act - Published Article -  01/01/2009

By: James L. Johnston, Oriyan Gitig and Alison Winter

What Is a Widget? A widget or web widget is an HTML code web application typically created by a third party which can be downloaded to a web page (including, for example, a blog or social networking profile) that delivers tailored information, graphics, games, videos, and other non-static content. Widgets are generally available at no cost, enabling users to easily access and distribute them, and are often customizable by the user.

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