Communications & Media Business Torts Antitrust & Trade Regulation

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FTC Wins Lawsuit Over Its Robocall Contest

In 2012, the FTC sponsored a contest in which it invited contestants to submit their best solutions to block robocalls. After reviewing almost 800 entries, the FTC announced two winners. As we posted previously, though, one...more

Mobile App Developer Settles with FTC and New Jersey AG Over Virtual Currency Mining

On June 29, a mobile app developer entered into an agreement with the FTC and the New Jersey AG to settle allegations that the developer engaged in deceptive and unfair practices by marketing its rewards app, called “Prized,”...more

FTC Announces First Action Involving Crowdfunding

Last week, the FTC announced its first legal action involving crowdfunding. For those of you who don’t know, crowdfunding is the practice of raising money for a project by seeking contributions from a large number of people,...more

Crowdfunding Project Creator Settles FTC Charges of Deception

In the FTC's first case involving crowdfunding, the agency took action against a project creator who was ostensibly raising money from consumers to produce a board game, but instead used most of the funds on himself....more

Tailoring the Suit: Plaintiffs File Amended Complaint in Nordstrom Rack Price-Tag False Advertising Lawsuit

Nordstrom Rack has recently found itself at the center of an unwelcome suit over its labeling practices. Nordstrom Rack discloses the savings it offers customers by placing “compare at” labels on its price tags which show two...more

Incentivized Reviews Without Disclosure Get Panned by FTC

In the latest iteration of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) approach to testimonials and endorsements in the context of online advertising, the Commission alleged that AmeriFreight, a company that arranges the shipment of...more

Advertiser Jumps the Gun With Brochure Touting Tests; Fifth Circuit Brushes Off First Amendment Challenge to Lanham Act Claims

Like claims for defamation or commercial disparagement, Lanham Act claims are viable only if they involve statements of fact, rather than opinion. But what happens if an advertising statement concerns an issue that is a...more

The FTC’s Thoughts on Why “Unlimited Data” Shouldn’t Need Scare Quotes

On October 28, 2014, the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued AT&T’s mobile division in the Northern District of California (F.T.C. v. AT&T Mobility LLC, Case No._ [N.D. Cal., Oct. 28, 2014] “AT&T Mobility”). The...more

Privacy Tuesday: July 2014 #2

FTC Sues Amazon Over In-App Purchases Made by Children - Children, according to Whitney Houston, are our future, but they are also, according to the Federal Trade Commission, willing to spend unlimited amounts of money...more

Disappearing Act Fails – Maryland Attorney General and FTC “snap” back at Snapchat

Recently, the Maryland Attorney General’s Office announced that it reached a settlement with Snapchat, Inc. over alleged deceptive trade practices in violation of Maryland law and violations of federal laws that are intended...more

Ninth Circuit Agrees with FTC that Online Marketing Program Was an Unlawful "Pyramid Scheme"

The legal status of many membership programs promoted via social media and spam has been called into question by a recent decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which affirmed a judgment that one such...more

FTC v. Jerk.com: Did the FTC’s “Jerk.com” Complaint Just Turn API Terms into Federal Law?

The Federal Trade Commission’s announcement earlier this week that it had filed a complaint against Jerk, LLC and its websites like “jerk.com” (“Jerk”) looks at first glance like a run-of-the-mill FTC Section 5 enforcement...more

Overstock Case Could Alter the Landscape of Price Comparison Advertising

A California court ruled earlier this month that Overstock must pay a roughly $6.8 million penalty to settle claims that the retailer “routinely and systematically” made false and misleading claims about the prices of its...more

FTC Approves Consent Order Regarding “Made in USA” False Claims

Under the Federal Trade Commission’s 1997 Enforcement Policy Statement on U.S. Origin Claims, in order to say a product is made in the USA, “all or virtually all” of the product has to be U.S.-made. All significant parts and...more

CFPB Files Complaint Alleging Violation of Telemarketing Sales Rule

The CFPB filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Central District of California against a debt-relief service company alleged to have violated the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule and engaged in deceptive...more

TM Owners Beware: Potential IP Scammers Are In Our Midst

There are few things more annoying than the feeling that you have been duped into paying for something that you neither need nor want. IP owners, and particularly trademark owners, are common targets for scammers seeking to...more

What’s That Charge on My Mobile Phone Bill? The FTC Wants to Know

“Cramming” – while it sounds like the experience of being in the middle row of a cross-country flight – actually refers to unauthorized charges on phone bills. Residential and business telecommunications customers have...more

Is the FTC Decision in POM Wonderful a Game Changer? Only Time (and a Pending Appeal) Will Tell

The saga of POM Wonderful, and the ongoing fight over its advertising, is a topic we have covered quite a bit on this blog. While the consumer class action involving POM was recently dismissed, a recent decision by the...more

Sustainability Claims Warrant Extra Caution

Originally published in the Los Angeles Daily Journal on February 28, 2013. National Public Radio recently ran a series on "sustainable" seafood claims which raised concern regarding the validity of certain...more

FTC. v. Wyndham Litigation

The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has been active in recent years pursuing companies that suffer data security breaches and arguably failed to live up to the data security standards promised in their privacy policies....more

Alaska Supreme Court Broadens Scope of Unfair Trade Practices Liability for Businesses’ Representations Concerning Their Goods

On March 30, 2012, the Alaska Supreme Court significantly expanded the scope of Alaska’s Unfair Trade Practices Act (“UTPA”) in a manner that will increase the risk of liability for businesses that make representations about...more

FTC Consent Order Requires Myspace Privacy Assessments for 20 Years: How Can You Keep the FTC Out of Your Space?

Once again, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a warning to companies with online privacy policies: if your privacy policy misrepresents protection of users’ personal information either directly or indirectly, you...more

FTC Settles Privacy Claims Against Myspace

On May 8, the FTC announced an agreement with Myspace to settle government allegations that the social networking service misrepresented the protections offered by its privacy policy. The policy promised consumers that...more

Advertising Law -- April 27, 2012

In This Issue: Duracell Battery Class Action Lawsuit; Class Action Settlement Seeks To “Stop” GameStop’s Allegedly Deceptive Marketing Practices; Commercial Email with Falsified or Misrepresented Header Information...more

FTC Files Complaint Against Weight Loss Promoter

The FTC and the State of Connecticut has jointly filed a complaint against a promoter of weight loss and “colon cleanse” products based in Connecticut. The complaint seeks stop the promoter from allegedly using fake news...more

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