2000 News |1999 News |1998 News |1997 News |1996 News

advertising law
advertising law

  July 1996 Advertising Law News...

advertising law  From: Advertising Compliance Service.
advertising law

advertising lawNOTE: The following news brief appeared in an issue of the Reference Service, Advertising Compliance Service and examined an advertising law-related action during the month of July 1996.


The marketer of an over-the-counter acne treatment, Acne-Statin, agreed to pay a $200,000 civil penalty to settle FTC charges that ads claiming the product to be an effective treatment for severe or cystic acne were deceptive. The claims also violate a 1979 order barring Dr. Atida H. Karr from making unsubstantiated claims about the effectiveness or superiority of any acne preparation she markets, FTC alleges.

The 1979 order bars Karr and her firms from advertising the effectiveness or superiority of any acne preparation unless the claims are supported by competent and reliable scientific or medical evidence. Karr paid $175,000 into a consumer refund account as part of the 1979 settlement of the initial case. In October 1995, FTC alleged that Karr was appearing in TV infomercials making claims about the effectiveness and superiority of her product, such as "Most of the people who wrote to me had acne for many years and couldn't find anything to clear their skin, that is, until they discovered Acne-Statin." Product endorsers claim Acne-Statin was effective in treating their severe or cystic acne. At the time Karr and her company made the claims, they lacked competent and reliable scientific or medical evidence to support the claims, FTC's complaint alleges. FTC filed suit in U.S. District Court seeking civil penalties and a permanent injunction to bar future violations of the original order. The consent agreement will end that litigation. Under the terms of the consent, Karr will be enjoined from using ads that use the words "severe" or "cystic" acne, and will pay a $200,000 civil penalty.

(Dr. Atida H. Karr, FTC File No. X960-001, Civil Action No. 95-3784-RSWL {SHx}, July 30, 1996; materials relating to this FTC matter are available on the Internet at FTC's World Wide Web site at: http://www.ftc.gov.)


FTC announced that Publishers Clearing House would take part in the Partnership for Consumer Education--"a cooperative effort among federal agencies, private industry, and consumer organizations to provide effective consumer education campaigns against fraud." As part of this campaign, Publishers Clearing House, working with FTC, has developed educational materials for distribution in prize promotion mailings and Sunday supplements. Messages emphasize that consumers don't have to "pay to play," and that "the best things in life are free."

(FTC Release, July 25, 1996.)


FTC has begun efforts to repeal its Used Oil Rule. The Used Oil Rule's labeling and advertising requirements for engine oils have been preempted by FTC's newer Recycled Oil Rule, which FTC promulgated in 1995 as required by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act.

(FTC Release, July 26, 1996.)


There may soon be a new name on the fiber content labels of certain items of clothing, such as swim suits and ski pants. FTC has proposed to allow U.S. manufacturers and other marketers to use the new designated name for a fiber that purportedly has stretching properties similar to spandex, but is composed of polyester and polyether segments, giving it chemically different characteristics. FTC seeks comments on the proposal, which it announced in response to a petition filed by Teijin Limited, a Osaka, Japan-based company that manufacturers the new fiber under the trade name "REXE."

The Textile Fiber Products Identification Act requires manufacturers to use the generic names of fibers contained in their textile products in the fiber content labels of those products. FTC rules and regulations under this statute set out the process a manufacturer must go through to establish a new generic fiber name. In October 1992, Teijin petitioned the FTC to add a fiber name and definition to the list of approved generic names established by Rule 7 of the Textile Act maintaining, among other things, that the new fiber was in active commercial use in the U.S., and that the new fiber does not fall within any existing established generic fiber category.

(Teijin Limited, FTC Matter No. P968405, July 8, 1996.)


FTC Chairman Robert Pitofsky named Victoria Streitfeld as FTC's new Director of Public Affairs, putting her in charge of the office that directs the FTC's relations with reporters and other members of the media.

Streitfeld formerly was Director of Communications and spokesperson for Senator Bill Bradley. Before that, she held the same positions with the New York State Unified Court System. Streitfeld was with the Office of the New York City Council President from 1988-1993. She can be reached at 202-326-2718 or 202-326-2180.

(FTC Release, July 10, 1996.)

NOTE: A consent agreement is for settlement purposes only and does not constitute an admission of a law violation. When the Commission issues a consent order on a final basis, it carries the force of law with respect to future actions. Each violation of such an order may result in a civil penalty of $10,000.

FTC Documents For more FTC documents at this Site, click here now!

© Copyright 1996-2012 JLCom Publishing Co., LLC All rights reserved. This publication, in whole or in part, may not be reproduced, stored in a computerized, or other, retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means whatsoever without the prior written permission of JLCom Publishing Co., LLC

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The materials included in this Website are intended for general information purposes only and are not intended to provide - and do not constitute - legal advice. Persons who need legal services should contact a duly licensed professional. your usage of this website is subject to this disclaimer.

news_button.jpg (2138 bytes)news_button2.jpg (2138 bytes)news_button3.jpg (2138 bytes)