The FTC voted today to issue revised proposed Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising, aka, the “Endorsement Guides.” In a 5-0 vote, including a yes vote from the FTC’s newest Commissioner, Alvaro Bedoya, the FTC agreed to publish their proposal in the Federal Register and will take comment on the updates from the public. In addition, the FTC announced that it will hold a virtual event on October 19, 2022, in which it will consider the special challenges presented by advertising to children, especially children under 12 years of age.

Continue Reading FTC Votes to Issue Revised Endorsement Guides for Public Comment

The FTC continues its pursuit of deceptive Made in USA claims, this time with allegations that company Lions Not Sheep and its owner, Sean Whalen, marketed apparel as being “Made in USA,” “Made in America,” “100% AMERICAN MADE,” and “BEST DAMN AMERICAN MADE GEAR ON THE PLANET” when in fact the products were made in China.
Continue Reading Beware the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: FTC Takes Action Against Apparel Retailer Who Bragged He Could Rip Off Consumers by Ripping Out Made in China Tags

The FTC entered into a consent order with Lithionics Battery LLC and its General Manager, settling allegations the company misrepresented its lithium ion cells are made in the United States. This is the first case the FTC has brought under its new civil penalty authority provided in the Made in USA Labeling Rule, which we wrote about last summer.
Continue Reading FTC Brings First Civil Penalty Action Under New “Made in USA” Rule

Several retailers recently settled cases with the FTC over allegations they deceptively marketed “bamboo” textiles. These cases come as some of the first, if not the first, instances of the FTC using its revived civil penalty authority to punish initial offenses by retailers.
Continue Reading FTC Uses Civil Penalty Authority in Rayon-as-Bamboo Cases

The Children’s Advertising Review Unit has recommended that Moose Toys, an Australian toy company, modify ads and packaging of its “Little Live Pets Gotta Go Turdle” toy to disclose that kids should not eat the synthetic “Turdle food” that comes with the toy. CARU also recommended that future promotions of the toy depict adult supervision.
Continue Reading CARU Wades Into the Water With “Gotta Go Turdle” Toy – Recommends Better Disclosures for Kids and Adult Supervision in Ads

In a rare “some assembly required” and “parts not included” decision, the Children’s Advertising Review Unit, a division of BBB National Programs, scrutinized advertising for Micro Machine toys.
Continue Reading CARU Requires Toy Company to Modify Ads to Show Limited Scope of Playsets, Adult Assembly Required, and Real Toy Play

In the first FTC case to challenge a company’s failure to post negative reviews, the FTC has reached a proposed settlement agreement with the online fashion retailer, Fashion Nova, LLC, prohibiting the retailer from suppressing negative reviews and requiring the company to pay $4.2 million for harm suffered by consumers.
Continue Reading FTC Holds Online Fashion Brand Accountable for Suppressing Negative Reviews, Issues Updated Guidance for Marketers, and Warns Review Platforms

In late 2021, the California Statewide Commission on Recycling Markets and Curbside Recycling asked the state’s Attorney General, Rob Bonta, and the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery to crack down on inappropriate use of recycling symbols on plastic bags, including the “chasing arrows” logo and the words “recycle” and “recyclable.” According to the Commission, confused California consumers place these mislabeled bags out for curbside collection, which forces recycling companies to spend time pulling these soft plastics out of the waste stream or fixing jammed machines.
Continue Reading California to Shore up Already-Robust Plastic Bag Enforcement

The National Advertising Division of BBB National Programs recently examined advertising claims by Straight Smile, LLC (Byte), seller of direct-to-consumer teeth aligners, recommending that Byte provide clear disclosures when reviewers of its product receive incentives in exchange for posting reviews.
Continue Reading Give it to Consumers Straight: NAD Recommends Clear Disclosures for Incentivized Reviews of Teeth Straightening Brand