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July 24, 2012 / Admin

New FTC Guidelines on Product Testimonials and Endorsements Enhance Consumer Protection From Deceptive Advertising

On October 5, 2009, the FTC announced approval of final revisions to the guidance it gives to advertisers on how to keep their endorsement and testimonial ads in line with the FTC Act.  The new guidelines, as explained in the official press release, require advertisers to affirmatively disclose when promotional claims regarding a product or service is not typical, and also make it clear that celebrities have a duty to disclose their relationships with advertisers when making endorsements outside the context of traditional ads, such as on talk shows or in social media. Perhaps the most significant revision, however, relates to the use of company sponsored research to promote a product or service. This practice has been a favorite tool of drug companies and the tobacco industry who seek to leverage sponsored research to promote the benefits of their products, or create the appearance of a scientific “debate” over risks. Under the new guidelines, the promotional reference to the findings of research sponsored by the company must be disclosed to the consumer.

A more detailed discussion of the New FTC Guidelines is addressed at the Bailey Class Action Daily at the link here.

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