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Let the Games Begin – Let Marketers Beware!

You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again – Stay away from any advertising or promotional ideas that suggest authorization, sponsorship or an official connection to the Olympics. This means not using the Olympic Rings...more

2/8/2018  /  Advertising , Copyright , Olympics , Trademarks , USOC

About that Dodge Super Bowl Ad

Did you catch that Dodge commercial everyone is talking about with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. voiceover? Many viewers took to Twitter last night to express their belief that the use of the speech to sell trucks was...more

Extra Foam, Please: Common Sense Prevails and Court Finds that Starbucks Lattes Contain Foam

Yes, you read the title of this post correctly – Judge Rogers of the Northern District of California granted summary judgement in favor of Starbucks in a proposed class action lawsuit alleging that the coffee company deceived...more

#MarketingLaw – Fake News, Auto-Renewal Subscription Plans, Influencers and the Latest from the FTC

We are back from the 2017 ANA/BAA Marketing Law Conference, Break Through: Legal Strategies for Dynamic Businesses. It was a great three days in Chicago of educational seminars and networking with colleagues, clients, friends...more

Advertising Your Glowing Online Reviews – How To Substantiate Ad Claims Based on Consumer Reviews

We’ve blogged a few times about consumers’ rights to post negative reviews online, and what businesses should know about the Consumer Review Fairness Act (the “CRFA”), but what happens if you are lucky enough to receive so...more

Sued for Retweeting – Yes, That Just Happened

On Monday this week, a sports psychologist named Keith Bell sued King’s College in Pennsylvania and its football coach, Jeffery Knarr, for retweeting a photo of a page of Dr. Bell’s book “Winning Isn’t Normal.” In his...more

The Latest Influencer Advertising Tips from the FTC – When, How & Where to Make Effective Disclosures

As we blogged about earlier this month, the FTC seems to have spent much of its summer checking out influencer advertising and focusing its attention on those who fail to make the necessary disclosures of material connections...more

Dear Influencers: It’s the FTC, Again – FTC Issues 21 Follow-up Warning Letters

Back in the Spring, we posted about a set of 90 warning letters the FTC sent to influencers and brands about the disclosure of material connections on Instagram. While you may have spent your summer trying to unplug, the FTC...more

P. Diddy on Instagram – No Free Pass on Copyright Law

As Biggie said “Mo Money Mo Problems” – Last month, a New York-based photojournalist filed suit again Diddy’s record label, Bad Boy Records, for posting a photo of none other than P. Diddy himself on his own Instagram...more

The FTC Gets Specific on Influencer Material Connection Disclosures

A few weeks ago we blogged about the FTC’s warning letter writing campaign to brands and influencers about disclosure of material connections on Instagram. At that time, the FTC had only released sample letters – one for one...more

Dear Influencers: #FullDisclosure we use Instagram too. Love, The FTC – Warning letters provide guidance to influencers,...

Instagram is now home to more than 600 million users, including many popular brands, celebrities, online influencers, famous dogs, regular people and regular dogs (full disclosure this regular dog is mine). As its popularity...more

Friends, Family and High Blood Pressure – FTC Takes Action Against Undisclosed Family Reviews and Unsubstantiated Claims for...

In previous posts, we’ve discussed the Federal Trade Commission’s significant enforcement efforts focused on two hot button issues: unsubstantiated health marketing claims and deceptive product endorsements. Once again, both...more

Is Marriage a “Material Connection”? The FTC Challenges an “Independent” Expert Based on Marital Status

Medical endorsements can be powerful selling tools for health care products. But if a medical professional has a connection to the company marketing the products that would be material to consumers in evaluating the...more

Avoiding the Road to Ruin in Your Road To Rio Marketing Blitz

Late last month, the United States Olympic Committee (the “USOC”) sent a few not so nice warning letters to brands that sponsor athletes, but chose not to pay the “golden” price of becoming an “official” sponsor of the games....more

Game Over: Warner Bros. Settles FTC Charges Relating to Video-Based Influencer Campaign

Earlier this week, the FTC announced that Warner Brothers entered into a consent order as a result of a complaint charging failure to adequately disclose that the video game publisher paid influencers to promote a new video...more

More Guidance for Advertisers and Influencers to Navigate Online Reviews and Endorsements

Late last week, the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network (“ICPEN”) published three sets of guidelines covering online reviews and endorsements. Why does this matter? ICPEN is an informal network of...more

The Second Circuit Re-Visits Dawn Donut and the Geographic Scope of Injunctive Relief in Trademark Cases

More than half a century ago, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued an influential decision in Dawn Donut Co. v. Hart’s Food Stores, Inc., concerning the proper scope of injunctive relief in a trademark...more

FTC Settles Charges with Misleading Websites: Another Native Advertising Enforcement Action

Following on the heels of the FTC’s March 2016 settlement with Lord & Taylor concerning a deceptive native advertising campaign, the FTC just announced that it has reached a settlement with SmartClick Media LLC over its phony...more

#Ad! — Lessons from the FTC’s First Case since the Release of its Enforcement Policy on Native Ads

As was widely reported, the Federal Trade Commission entered into a settlement in March with Lord & Taylor over charges that the retailer allegedly deceived consumers through a native advertising campaign run on Instagram and...more

Oscar “Swag Bag” Gets Booted From the Red Carpet By The Academy—Don’t Let This Happen To You!

In a recent post, we provided guidance on how an advertiser might execute a Super Bowl-related promotion even if it is not an authorized game sponsor. First, avoid mentioning the trademarked name of the event — instead,...more

Did You Catch that Hashtag at the Super Bowl?

Early in the game on Sunday night, Esurance ran a commercial announcing that it was giving away more than $1 million through a sweepstakes on Twitter. You may remember that Esurance made a splash with a Twitter-based...more

Don’t Let Your Super Bowl Promotion Get Sidelined

Every year at this time clients call who want to take advantage of Super Bowl frenzy, whether by running an online sweepstakes, offering a special deal to customers on Super Sunday, posting memes on their Facebook pages,...more

Going Native? Part 2: The FTC’s Native Advertising Guide for Businesses – The Why, When and How of Effective Disclosures

At the end of December, we blogged about the FTC’s long-awaited Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements. Along with the policy, the FTC issued a Guide for Businesses that contains seventeen...more

Going Native? The FTC’s Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements Provides a Roadmap – Part 1

Last week, the FTC issued its long-awaited Enforcement Policy Statement on Deceptively Formatted Advertisements, often referred to as “native advertising.” For those unfamiliar with the term, the FTC helpfully explains that...more

Healthy Holidays From the FTC: Reminders from the FTC to Keep Health Advertising Claims Healthy

Late last week, the FTC Business Center Blog posted a short but important entry on health-related advertising representations entitled 5 principles to help keep your health claims healthy. This friendly reminder highlights...more

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