Silence isn't golden when it comes to disclosures, FDA's "old school" list of dietary ingredients, and more in this issue of Advertising Law News & Analysis

3 min

Laptop and Cash

For Lenovo, Silence Is Not Golden

On September 5, the FTC and 32 state attorneys general announced the settlement of complaints alleging that computer manufacturer Lenovo engaged in unfair and deceptive practices when it installed certain software on computers sold to consumers. The FTC's complaint alleged that Lenovo deceived consumers through omissions about the software's functionality, and committed unfair acts by not disclosing potential security risks the software could cause, failing to obtain consumers' informed consent, and failing to address security issues with the software. However, in a recent blog post, Venable partner Leonard Gordon writes that the most interesting aspect of the case may be the differences of opinion about the scope of the Commission's authority to bring deceptive omission cases that are highlighted in the statements filed by Acting FTC Chairman Ohlhausen and Commissioner McSweeny.

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Dietary Supplements

FDA Compiling "Old School" List

On September 5, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it will hold a public meeting on October 3 to discuss the development of an authoritative list of dietary ingredients marketed prior to the enactment of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act in October 1994. In a recent client alert, Venable attorneys Todd Halpern, Todd Harrison, Michelle Jackson, Claudia Lewis, and Ashley Saba write that, for the first time, this will provide the industry with a list of ingredients that the agency will permit to be marketed as dietary ingredients without a New Dietary Ingredient Notification. In addition to the public meeting, the FDA will accept public comments until December 4.

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Mobile Apps

FTC Enforcement Goes Straight to the Horse's Mouth

Last Thursday was a big day at the Federal Trade Commission for influencer announcements, write Venable attorneys Amy Mudge and Randy Shaheen in a recent blog post. The Commission announced its first ever settlement with social media influencers, sent a second round of warning letters to a large group of influencers, and updated its FAQs on endorsements with additional guidance—including its current views about what phrases are and are not clear in disclosing material connections between influencers and brands.

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Advertising Law Tool Kit

From the Tool Kit:

Many advertisers view social media as an opportunity to cut through marketing clutter by having influencers endorse products and services. As social media endorsements have grown in popularity, so has the FTC's interest in policing them. In the most recent edition of the firm's Advertising Law Tool Kit, Venable partner Randy Shaheen outlines what brands need to ensure that material connections with social media influencers are disclosed properly.

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SupplySide West

September 25-29, 2017 | Las Vegas, NV

Venable will be the Official Legal and Regulatory Partner at this year's SupplySide West Global Expo & Conference. This conference focuses on the exploration, discovery, innovation, and marketing strategy around the development of finished consumer goods in the animal nutrition, beverage, cosmetics, dietary supplements, sports nutrition, food, and pharmaceutical industries. Venable partners Todd Harrison, Claudia Lewis, Michelle Jackson, and Michael Blume will participate in panel discussions on regulations, class action litigation, and clean label messaging. Be sure to visit us at our offices directly in front of the SupplySide West registration entrance in the Expo Hall holding area!

Request a complimentary consultation with Venable at the conference.


Electronic Retailing Association's 2017 D2C Convention

October 2-5, 2017 | Wynn Hotel, Las Vegas, NV

Venable is proud to sponsor the 2017 ERA D2C Convention, where innovators, marketers, and manufacturers come together to showcase the latest trends in direct response. Be sure to visit Venable in booth #201, and mingle with our team at the Pre-Moxie Mixer on Tuesday, October 3 from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Schedule a meeting with Venable at D2C.