Commercial Alert, a consumer advocacy group, has launched a new website: StopDrugAds.org. The site was created to challenge direct to consumer advertising for prescription drugs.
- Gary Ruskin, StopDrugAds.org: A New Website Against DTC Prescription Drug Advertising, Commercial Alert Press Release (Jan. 23, 2005)
- Rich Thomaselli, Commercial Alert Launches Anti-Drug Ads Website, AdAge.com (Jan. 23, 2005)
Welcome to the Advertising Law Blog. I will be transferring posts from the old blog over the course of the coming weeks. Thanks for your patience.
I’ve discussed why disclosure is important in word-of-mouth advertising, also known as “buzz” marketing, because of the potential problems with the Federal Trade Commission or state regulators. Now a study by a Northeastern University professor suggests disclosure is more than a sound legal practice. According to the study, buzz campaigns were more likely to be passed on to other consumers — at a rate of 70% — when an advertiser is disclosed.
See Matthew Creamer, Disclosure Doesn’t Hamper Word-of-mouth Marketing, AdAge.com (Jan. 19, 2006).
Lawsuits about advertising unhealthy products to children continue to pull in the press as the Center for Science in the Public Interest announced its intent to file a lawsuit against Viacom and Kellogg Co. that will claim that the companies engaged in unfair and deceptive advertising by marketing “food of poor nutritional quality” to children under 8 years old. This lawsuit was announced as the Center also announced that it will delay a lawsuit against cola companies that would challenge the advertising and sale of soda in schools. Both Pepsi-Cola Co. and the Coca-Cola Co. are negotiating with the Center and the American Beverage Association has taken steps to limit the sale of soda in schools.
Both suits aimed to take advantage of favorable laws in Massachusetts that allow individuals to sue company’s for deceptive advertising as private attorneys general.
- Wendy Melillo and Steve McClellan, Child Advocates Take on Kellogg, Viacom, Adweek (Jan. 18, 2006)
- Ira Teinowitz, Food Giants Targeted in $2 Billion Lawsuit, AdAge.com (Jan. 19, 2006)
- Ira Teinowitz, Consumer Group Postpones Lawsuit Against Beverage Giants, AdAge.com (Jan. 19, 2006)
- Libby Quaid, Nickelodeon, Kellogg Targeted in Junk-Food Lawsuit, New York Lawyer (Jan. 19, 2006)
Here’s an update on the Interpublic Group’s lawsuit against Frank Lowe that was the topic of this post. If Interpublic doesn’t apologize, Lowe says he will sue for defamation and tortuous interference. No reports on who gets custody of the couple’s dog.
- Matthew Creamer, Frank Lowe Mulls Counterattack in IPG Battle, AdAge.com (Jan. 16, 2006)
- Interpublic sues Frank Lowe for stealing from Lowe, Advertising Law Blog (Jan. 14, 2006)
- Andrew McMains, Frank Lowe Blasts IPG’s Claims , Adweek (Jan. 16, 2006)
Interpublic is suing Frank Lowe, the founder of Interpublic’s Lowe Worldwide agency, for grabbing one of his old agency’s clients for his new London-based start-up. In a statement, Interpublic took Lowe to the mat, stating:
Frank Lowe sold his agency to Interpublic in 1990 for tens of millions of dollars and subsequently received many times that amount in financial support and resources to build a global network, recruit and compensate key talent. Our claim states that, in breach of his continuing fiduciary responsibilities, he has chosen to use contacts and proprietary knowledge to damage Lowe and Interpublic.
AdAge.com, Interpublic takes legal action against Frank Lowe (Jan. 13, 2005).
A New York state judge has denied Mike Burns motion to dismiss Saatchi & Saatchi’s lawsuit against him. The suit claims that Burns violated his fiduciary duty, his duty of loyalty, and the terms of his contract with Saatachi by orchestrating the departure of most of the team handling the agencies General Mills account, popularly referred to as the Saatachi 17.
See Lisa Sanders, Judge Denies Mike Burns’ Motion to Dismiss, AdAge.com (Jan. 11, 2006)