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Posts Tagged ‘Digital Marketing’

PHAI’s Wilking Authors Piece for Update Magazine on Digital Food Marketing targeting Kids

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

PHAI Senior Staff Attorney Cara Wilking’s article, State Law Approaches to Curtail Digital Food Marketing Tactics Targeting Young Children, has been published in the January/February, 2014 issue of the Food and Drug Law Institute’s Update Magazine.  In the article, Wilking describes why digital marketing, which is inherently deceptive to younger children.  She explains the role of packaging, “advergames,” and digital sweepstakes in digital marketing.

Wilking concludes that these practices may trigger specific consumer protection law provisions and case law precedent around unfair and deceptive trade practices and looks to state attorney generals to take steps to stop these practices.

Download State Law Approaches to Curtail Digital Food Marketing Tactics Targeting Young Children (pdf).



PHAI Releases Major Report on Digital Food Marketing to Youth: Urges State Attorneys General to Act

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

December 19, 2013

The Public Health Advocacy Institute (PHAI) at Northeastern University School of Law, along with our partners at the Center for Digital Democracy and Berkeley Media Studies Group, today releases State Law Approaches to Address Digital Food Marketing to Youth.  It is a first-of-its kind resource that provides an evidence base and action steps grounded in state law.  State attorneys general and other stakeholders in children’s health and privacy can use it to put a stop to troubling digital marketing practices that deceive youth and their parents.

In addition to clear explanations of how digital marketing works and why it poses privacy and health risks to youth, key legal issues for state regulators are explored.  These issues include personal jurisdiction over out-of-state food and beverage marketing and media companies; the interplay of federal and state laws regulating mobile marketing; and the application of state promotions laws to child consumers.

Key findings include:

Senior Staff Attorney, Cara Wilking, who was lead author of the report, noted that, “state attorneys general are in a unique position to leverage state law approaches to stop unfair, deceptive, or otherwise illegal digital marketing of unhealthy foods to our youngest and most vulnerable consumers.”

PHAI’s Executive Director, Mark Gottlieb, added, “there is a general failure to understand the disturbing marketing practices that are becoming commonplace in the digital marketing world. This report goes a long way toward closing the knowledge gap between those using powerful technology to sell junk to kids and those who have the responsibility to protect them.”

State Law Approaches to Address Digital Food Marketing to Youth Report

Support for State Law Approaches to Address Digital Food Marketing to Youth was provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundations Healthy Eating Research Program (#69293).

 

 



PHAI Publishes Legal Issue Brief on Digital Viral Food Marketing to Kids

Friday, March 8th, 2013

viral_digital_food_marketing_brief_graphic

Food companies used viral digital marketing tactics, such as “tell-a-friend” web campaigns, to induce children to share e-mail addresses of their friends and spread brand advertising of unhealthy foods among their peers.  Even very young children are targeted by these campaigns, which may be considered unfair and deceptive and in violation of state consumer protection laws.

PHAI has prepared a legal issue brief on this topic for state attorneys general as well as stakeholders in children’s health and privacy.  The brief explains the tactics that are used and suggests ways that they can be addressed, particularly under state law.

This work was supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Healthy Eating Research Program (#69293).



PHAI’s Cara Wilking on updating children’s online privacy protection

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

It has been nearly 15 years since Congress enacted the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).  In that time, marketing in a digital world has become ubiquitous and, often, indistinguishable from other content.  An essential part of this transformation of marketing involves providing a a surprisingly wide variety of information about the users to advertisers and content providers, usually without their knowledge.

When COPPA was created, data mining and other sophisticated data collection techniques did not exist.  Nor did the variety of platforms we see today, including mobile “geo-aware” computing platforms that can track one’s location through global positioning satellite as well as Wi-Fi technology.  Currently the Federal Trade Commission is proposing to update the rules of children’s online privacy protection to better accomplish what COPPA was designed to do:  ensure that children’s privacy is not compromised absent parental consent.

PHAI’s senior staff attorney, Cara Wilking, appeared on KPCC radio’s Airtalk on October 1 to discuss the updating of COPPA by the FTC.  Listen to the podcast here.

PHAI signed on to comments on the FTC’s proposed new rules for administering COPPA on September 25th.  They can be reviewed here.

The New York Times covered this issue on September 27 in an article entitled, “U.S. is Tightening Web Privacy Rule to Shield Young.”




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