Advertising

Google's "Oprah" Moment, Gwyneth Paltrow's Rave, and Two Tests for FTC's Endorsement Guides

It could have been a moment right out of The Oprah Winfrey Show.  But instead of the entire audience getting Pontiac G6s (click here for a fun mash-up video of that big event), all the reporters attending the unveiling of Google's new Nexus One mobile phone on January 5 were given a special offer: they could get one of the phones for free, or to opt for a free, 30-day trial, after which the phone will be returned (loan agreement). (The free offer is mentioned in the 1:55 p.m. posting on this Wall Street Journal live blog of the press conference.)  It appears that some other reporters who were not at the event also got the phones.

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CMLP Publishes New Guide to FTC Disclosure Requirements for Product Endorsements

As part of our legal guide series on Risks Associated with Publication, today CMLP published a guide to Publishing Product or Service Endorsements

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One of the Classic Blunders: Microsoft’s De-Listing Campaign Makes No Sense

Before the Thanksgiving holiday, Microsoft held talks with News Corp. in an attempt to convince the titan of information to de-list its content from Google.

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Yet Another Plaintiff Faceplant, Thanks to Section 230

I am constantly impressed with plaintiffs' hapless charges against the nearly impenetrable immunity that is Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (“Section 230”).  Time and time again, angry plaintiffs bring suit against websites because some unknown third party posted questionable, if not illegal, material.  And time and time again, those claims are stymied by Section 230, which grants the websites immunity from liability for those third-party postings.  Seriously

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New FTC Rules Aim to Kill the Buzz on Blogs

On October 5, the Federal Trade Commission issued new guidelines (large pdf) on advertising involving endorsements and testimonials.

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The New Intellectual Arms Trade: Amazon and B&N as Literary God-Emperors

When we were kids, we couldn’t wait for the future to hurry up and get here. Flying cars, pills for food, conveyor belts, the works.

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Another One Bites the Dust: Roommates as a Hail Mary for Frivolous Lawsuits

Yet another lawsuit that probably should never have been brought has been dismissed due to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act ("

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Blog Buzzer Sounds; FTC Calls Foul

UPDATE: After making some changes from the proposal discussed below, the FTC published the new regulations in the Federal Register on Oct. 5, 2009, with the new rules scheduled to go into effect on Dec. 1.  More details here.

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Breaking News: Virgin America Sues Blog Over Parody Ad

Earlier this week, California-based airline Virgin America filed a six-count complaint against the publisher and editors of Adrants, a blog focused on the advertising industry, after they published a post that was paired with a fake ad containing the Virgin logo and the statement, "The Hudson Crash: Just One More Reason to Fly Virgin."  The post has since been removed, but a cached version is available

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