Category Archives: Children/Kids

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California to Gatorade – Don’t Mess with Water

Gatorade recently learned two timeless lessons the hard way from the State of California.  First, never mess with water.  Second, advertising claims are everywhere, including in what some might consider to be just fun and games.  In exchange for these lessons, Gatorade paid the State of California $300,000 and agreed to injunctive relief. So what … Continue Reading

FTC Updates COPPA Guidance for IoT and New Consent Options

On June 21, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) updated one of its Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) compliance guides for businesses. Known as the “Six-Step Compliance Plan,” this document provides a step-by-step road map for determining if a company is covered by COPPA and what to do to comply. COPPA applies to operators … Continue Reading

Coffee Talk with Elaine Kolish: CFBAI Director Looks Back and Forward

Our friend Elaine Kolish, Director of the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative is stepping down shortly after a remarkable ten year run. So we thought this was a great opportunity to sit down with Elaine and look back over her accomplishments, what might be coming next for the organization, and lessons that companies in other … Continue Reading

No Cop Out in COPPA: The FTC’s First Enforcement Actions on Persistent Identifiers

Last week, in settlements with two app developers, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced its first enforcement actions under the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (“COPPA Rule”) amendments on persistent identifiers.  Persistent identifiers are data that can be used to recognize a user over time and across different websites or online services.  In 2012, we … Continue Reading

Broadening Your Self-Regulatory Options – 2 Sheriffs in Town

The Advertising Self-Regulatory Council operates several self-regulatory programs including CARU, NAD and ERSP.  Traditionally these have been thought of as distinct programs – CARU regulates marketing to children, ERSP regulates companies that market and sell their products electronically while NAD oversees most traditional national advertisers.  While this compartmentalization is largely true, there is some overlap … Continue Reading

CARU Heats up with Fireside Chat about Hot Button Issues in Children’s Marketing with Commissioner McSweeny

Huddled in front of a digital hearth on the third and final morning of the NAD Annual Conference, FTC Commissioner Terrell McSweeny participated in a cozy fireside chat about children’s marketing with ASRC President and CEO, C. Lee Peeler. The newest FTC Commissioner reported (or warned!) that she is closely following the evolution of marketing … Continue Reading

Age-Gating Your Website: Do Not Make it a Scandal

‎”Gates” as scandals probably started with Watergate but many other embarrassments followed suit with a similar gating moniker. Nipple-gate or Janet Jackson’s Superbowl wardrobe malfunction, Zoe Baird’s Nanny-gate are just a few. Age-gating your website to make sure it is COPPA-compliant should not give rise to messy press and finger-pointing. ‎Web designers and marketers need … Continue Reading

Is It Safe To Use Seals to Promote Your Product? NAD Says Foo to FuHu

Everyone loves an award.  It is one thing when a marketer promotes its own product but to be able to back promises with a seal, a certificate, or other third-party recognition of greatness gives extra confidence to consumers that this is a product they can really trust.  There has been much talk recently about dos … Continue Reading

California Enacts Law Protecting Minors’ Digital Privacy Rights

Kids say the darndest things, and California wants to make sure that when it comes to their online postings those kids get a do-over.  On January 2015, California law SB 568 entitled “Privacy Rights for California Minors in the Digital World” will go into effect, allowing minors to remove certain posted online content as well … Continue Reading

Live (almost) from New York, It’s the NAD Annual Conference

We are close to live blogging from the annual NAD Advertising Law Conference and for those who could not join us, we wanted to share highlights from its opening — keynote speaker FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez.  The FTC typically uses this conference to lay out its enforcement priorities relevant to national advertisers and gives us … Continue Reading

CARU Reprimands Boy Scouts for Sweepstakes Ads: What Are the Odds?

The Boy Scouts of America failed to get their compliance badge from CARU earlier this month after the BSA ran a sweepstakes ad that lacked the appropriate odds of winning disclosures.  The BSA’s Boy’s Life Magazine failed to include the “Many Will Enter, Five Will Win” odds statement in the magazine’s ad announcing the sweeps, … Continue Reading

Trying to Reach Spongebob-Loving Moms with Your Ads? CARU Warns Some Products Just Can’t Be Advertised on Children’s Media

Every parent does it. Sits down for a minute with our kids to watch Phineas and Ferb and we look up and a half hour has gone by. Marketers know this can be a great time to capture our attention and affection when we are relaxing with our kids. But CARU recently reminds us that … Continue Reading

Upcoming Panel: “Countdown to the New COPPA”

The Clock Is Ticking – Is COPPA Compliance a “Mission Impossible”? On July 1, 2013, sweeping new regulations for marketing to children take effect. In updating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has extended its reach to new businesses and new information. In this upcoming session presented by … Continue Reading

Claim Interpretation Can Sometimes Depend Upon How You Look At It

From a marketing standpoint companies always want to know who the target audience is for the advertising, but sometimes it becomes important from a legal standpoint as well.  In some instances arguments regarding the target audience can be helpful.  Claims are usually interpreted with regard to the “reasonable consumer” but in some instances claims that … Continue Reading

Who Knew There Would Be Two Teachable Moments in Cookie Ads?

CARU and NAD are sister self-regulatory agencies under the BBB’s ASRC umbrella, NAD aimed at truth in advertising generally and CARU focusing on child-directed ads.  Both NAD and CARU reviewed ads for WhoNu cookies in 2012 and came to different conclusions as to similar ads based on the maturity of the audiences.  It is a … Continue Reading

Upcoming Panel: “COPPA: The Final Word”

On July 1, 2013, sweeping new regulations for marketing to children take effect.  (See details here).  In updating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) Rule, the Federal Trade Commission has extended its reach to new businesses and new information.  Even if you were safe in the past, you may not be in this brave … Continue Reading

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like… COPPA

Just in time for Christmas, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has unveiled its long-anticipated update to the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (“COPPA Rule”).  The COPPA Rule, which has been in place since 1999, imposes a variety of privacy requirements on “operators” of websites and online services that are “directed to children” under 13 or … Continue Reading
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