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Chapter 2

Advertising and Society: Ethics,


Regulation, and Social Responsibility

Outline
• Advertising and society
• Ethical issues in advertising
• Advertising’s legal and regulatory environment
• Federal case law affecting advertising
• Advertising and the FTC
• Advertising and other regulatory agencies
• Social responsibility and self-regulation
Advertising and Social
Responsibility

• Ethical issues
– Advocacy
– Accuracy
– Acquisitiveness
• Is being ethical a problem?

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Social Responsibility

• Public service announcements (PSAs)


– Ad Council
• Social marketing

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Six Key Issues in
Advertising

• Puffery
• Taste and advertising
– Product categories and taste
– Current issues

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Six Key Issues in
Advertising

• Stereotyping in advertising
– Women in advertisements
– Racial and ethnic stereotypes
– Senior citizens
– Gay and lesbian consumers
• Advertising to children

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Six Key Issues in
Advertising

• Advertising controversial products


– Tobacco
– Alcohol
– Gambling
– Prescription drugs
• Subliminal advertising

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Federal Case Law
Affecting Advertising

• First Amendment case law


• Privacy case law developments: online
advertising

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Advertising and the
FTC

• Federal Trade Commission (FTC)


– Some FTC responsibilities
• Deception
• Reasonable basis for claims
• Comparative advertising
• Endorsements
• Demonstrations

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Advertising and the
FTC

• FTC deceptive and unfair advertising remedies


– Consent decrees
– Cease-and-desist orders
– Corrective advertising
– Substantiating advertising claims
– Consumer redress
– Hold the ad agency legally responsible

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Advertising and Other
Regulatory Agencies

• Food and Drug Administration (FDA)


• Federal Communications Commission
(FCC)
• Additional Federal Regulatory Agencies
– U.S. Postal Service; Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco, and Firearms; U.S. Patent Office;
Library of Congress

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Social Responsibility and
Self-Regulation

• Self-discipline
• Self-regulation: pure and co-opted
– National Advertising Division of the Better
Business Bureau (NAD)
– National Advertising Review Board (NARB)
• Local regulation
• Media regulation and advertising

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