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FTC Testimonial Guidelines Say Advertisers Must Show Typical Outcomes

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Revised Federal Trade Commission guidelines on endorsements and testimonials will not have a chilling effect on advertising as long as marketers using anecdotal testimonials provide information on what typical outcomes are, according to an FTC executive

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In Brief

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The Federal Trade Commission will issue updated guides later in 2009 to assist advertisers in using endorsements. Agency staff is currently analyzing comments about proposed changes to its 1980 guides, said David Vladeck, director of FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection (1"The Tan Sheet" Dec. 1, 2008). The current "guides are not working as intended to prevent consumer deception," particularly with "typicality claims," he told the Senate Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance Subcommittee July 22. Vladeck said testimonials and endorsements still are misused, particularly with weight-loss products

Supplements’ Direct Response Marketing Success Sets Off FTC Alarm

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