FTC Considers Applying Online Disclosure Guidelines to Emerging Digital, Mobile Platforms

– Response Magazine

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) hosted a full-day public workshop on May 30 to consider whether its current guidelines for disclosures in online advertising, known as the Dot-Com Disclosures, need to be modified or revised in light of the technological advances in digital, social and mobile media that have occurred since they were first issued in 2000.

Marketers who have begun to market through the use of mobile and social media have likely encountered the challenges that these platforms present when trying to make clear and conspicuous disclosures that comply with the existing guidelines. For example, the current guides generally require that material terms and conditions of an offer be presented in close proximity to and on the same page as the triggering claims, that the disclosures be “unavoidable” and that certain material information, including in particular health and safety information, cannot be made through the use of hyperlinks. They also require that hyperlinks when used be properly labeled to indicate the nature of the disclosures contained therein and that consumers who click on the hyperlink be taken immediately to the relevant disclosures.

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