Tag Archives: Advertising

The 13th Public Commission Meeting – an AI Study About Online Scams and, Yes, Another Policy Statement

We spend many of our working hours – and far too many of our nonworking hours – talking about Federal Trade Commission (FTC or Commission) issues, and we can confidently state that no one has ever said to us, “I sure do wish the agency would issue yet another policy statement.” With that, we turn … Continue Reading

If an Agency Calls Something Unfair, Does That Magically Make It Unlawful? A Recent Blog Post by the FTC’s Chief Technology Officer

Last week, the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) tech blog quietly published a post that could have broad implications – for privacy practitioners and beyond. In this post, the agency takes the novel position that if consumer data is compromised in a security incident and the company does not provide consumer notice, that could in and … Continue Reading

May 2022 Public Commission Meeting – Meet Commissioner Bedoya, Plus Blasts from the Past, Endorsements and an FTC Legend

In February 2020, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it was going to reexamine the Endorsements and Testimonial Guides (Guides) and sought comment on whether and how the Guides should be changed, including addressing issues involving reviews, affiliate links, children’s perceptions and changes in technology. Two very long years later, the FTC has proposed … Continue Reading

What Is a PFAS, and Why Should I Care? Part III – California’s Proposition 65

In Part I and Part II of this blog series, we introduced and discussed per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), commonly referred to as “forever chemicals,” which have been recent targets of consumer class actions and regulatory enforcement due to their alleged human health risks. As a quick refresher, PFAS includes a class of more than … Continue Reading

A Deeper Dive into the FTC’s Proposed Changes to the Telemarketing Sales Rule and the Continued Interest in Negative Option Programs

At last week’s public Federal Trade Commission (FTC) meeting, the commissioners unanimously voted for possible changes to the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR). Given the intense interest in FTC rulemaking and the important role the TSR plays in FTC enforcement, we thought this warranted a closer look.  First off, this is a very different rulemaking process … Continue Reading

What’s Going on at the FTC? New Employee Survey Raises Issues If You Are Engaging with the Agency

A recent survey of FTC employees put forward some interesting numbers. In 2020, FTC staff were asked if their senior leaders “maintain high standards of honesty and integrity” and 87 percent answered positively. In November 2021, the same staff were asked the same question and the positive responses dropped by 34 points to 53 percent. … Continue Reading

The FTC’s Website Redesign – Broken Links, Missing Content and Broken Dreams

Whether you are an FTC fan or foe, we can all agree that one of the agency’s crown jewels is its consumer and business education program. For decades, this program has provided information that has helped consumers protect themselves and has provided businesses with important information and guidance to inform their decision making. And probably … Continue Reading

What’s in a Label – Three Takeaways from the FTC’s First Enforcement Action Brought Under the New Made in the USA Rule

Last year, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) finalized a new rule (Rule) that would allow the agency to seek civil penalties in matters where a company made a false and unqualified Made in the USA (MUSA) claim on product labels. In the rulemaking process, however, the FTC developed a very broad definition of “labels,” which … Continue Reading

Bamboozling Part II: The FTC Brings Back Retro Penalty Offense Letters like Bell Bottoms and Big Hair

What do bamboo fabric and green claims have to do with toys, weight loss, car rentals and fur coats? Sounds like the start of a Dad joke, but unfortunately this is no laughing matter. It is the FTC reaching back to bygone eras for help in getting money in its enforcement cases. Much virtual ink … Continue Reading

The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear BluBlockers – A Walk Through Advertising History

The other day, we noticed an article announcing that legendary direct marketer Joe Sugarman had passed away. He had quite a career in the industry but was probably best known for the omnipresent BluBlocker sunglasses that were on heavy rotation in the 1980s and early ’90s. For younger readers, BluBlockers were ultra-cool sunglasses that promised … Continue Reading

What Is a PFAS, and Why Should I Care? Part II – The Threat to the Restaurant and Food Packaging Industries, and Potential Personal Injury Classes

In our initial blog post, we introduced readers to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), known as “forever chemicals,” and predicted the rise of PFAS consumer class actions and increased regulatory activity barring the use of PFAS in consumer products in state and federal legislatures. As a quick refresher, PFAS biodegrade very slowly, are extremely persistent … Continue Reading

No Time to Weight and Watch for Children’s Data Compliance

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently settled with Weight Watchers (WW) and its subsidiary Kurbo for alleged violations of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act  (COPPA). COPPA requires websites, apps and other online services to obtain express parental consent prior to collecting, using or disclosing personal information of children under 13. It is a complex … Continue Reading

What is a PFAS, and Why Should I Care?

We are bombarded with countless abbreviations every day – CPPA, GLBA, MSRP, SARS and BPA, to name just a few. Time to add one more to the list. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, colloquially known as PFAS, are a class of more than 4,700 chemical compounds, the components of which break down very slowly over time. … Continue Reading

Leveling Up: Advertising to Children Through Video Games

Video games have come a long way from the days of Atari’s Pong; today’s games can contain fully immersive worlds complete with brand partnerships. Video game platforms, such as Roblox, which boasts over 100 million active users in its virtual world, can reach swaths of potential brand loyalists. For many companies and brands, video game … Continue Reading

FTC and the States — Everything You Wanted to Know but Were Afraid to Ask

A lot has been written about the impact of the Supreme Court’s AMG decision on the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) future law enforcement approaches and strategies. One option is more administrative litigation, but that process can take many years and requires the FTC to demonstrate that the challenged practices were “dishonest or fraudulent.” Another option … Continue Reading

Look Back, Look Ahead: State Attorneys General Enforcement – Part Two

Last month, as part of BakerHostetler’s “Look Back, Look Ahead: Advertising and Marketing Law in 2021 & 2022” webinar series, partners Craig A. Hoffman and Victoria Weatherford presented on recent trends and predictions on state attorney general enforcement. The following summarizes our 10 predictions for state attorneys general enforcement in 2022. Prediction No. 1: Upcoming … Continue Reading

FTC Issues Guidance on Use of Consumer Reviews: Brands, Platforms and Comparison Websites Are in the Hot Seat

The use of consumer reviews as a marketing strategy has grown exponentially in recent years, and brands have become increasingly reliant on consumer reviews as a marketing strategy to drive consumer purchase behavior. In fact, a recent study by Bright Local revealed that over 85 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as recommendations … Continue Reading
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