Feds Sue Volkswagen For Deceptive “Clean Diesel” Advertising

Feds Sue Volkswagen For Deceptive “Clean Diesel” Advertising

We all know by now that Volkswagen’s “Clean Diesel” vehicles were anything but, and that the carmaker deliberately used so-called “defeat devices” to cheat on emissions tests. Now, in an effort to get compensation for people who purchased one of these dirty diesels, the Federal Trade Commission has sued VW, accusing the company of deceptive advertising. [More]

Patrick

Coke Says It Paid $132.5M To Fund Scientific Research Over A Five-Year Period

After facing backlash and fallout from its funding of the now-defunct Global Energy Balance Network — an anti-obesity organization with a decidedly pro-soda bent — Coca-Cola began disclosing all of its spending in the U.S. on scientific research and health partnerships. Now, nearly six months after first disclosing it had spent $118.5 million in a five-year period, the company has come back with an updated figure of $132.8 million.  [More]

(Adam Fagen)

Study: Ads On The Mobile Web Don’t Just Suck, They Suck Up Valuable Data

You’ve got a limited allotment of monthly LTE data to use, so you’re careful with it. You just load up the news and read it — on a reputable website — while waiting for a coffee or the bus, let’s say. And yet at the end of the month you’ve used way more data than you feel like you should have. The culprit? Those annoying ads that get in your way anyway.

[More]

Lord & Taylor Gets Slap On Wrist For Paying Instagram “Influencers” To Run Secret Ads

Lord & Taylor Gets Slap On Wrist For Paying Instagram “Influencers” To Run Secret Ads

If you’re getting paid to chat up a product or brand on social media, you need to disclose your relationship with what you’re shilling. That’s why retailer Lord & Taylor ended up in hot water with the Federal Trade Commission after paying high-profile Instagram accounts to secretly market their clothing without revealing that these were just ads. [More]

Tobacco Companies Criticized For Lax Age-Verification On E-Cigarette Websites

Tobacco Companies Criticized For Lax Age-Verification On E-Cigarette Websites

Putting an age-verification gate on an adults-only website is arguably as helpful in keeping curious kids away as putting a cardboard cutout of a burly bouncer outside of a nightclub. But if a tobacco company is going to have a strict age-block on its cigarette site, shouldn’t its e-cigarette website have the same restrictions? [More]

FanDuel CEO Admits: Maybe They Might Have Overdone It A Bit With The TV Ads

FanDuel CEO Admits: Maybe They Might Have Overdone It A Bit With The TV Ads

For several weeks during the recently concluded NFL season, either FanDuel or DraftKings were the top spenders on TV advertising, interrupting seemingly every show to tout how easy it is for the average Joe to win big at daily fantasy sports (assuming that the “average Joe” is in the elite tier of DFS players). That doesn’t include official sponsorship deals with teams, TV networks, and pro sports leagues (or that shoehorned-in DraftKings-sponsored subplot during the final season of The League). Looking back on it now, the CEO of FanDuel confesses that maybe they should tone it down a bit with the advertising going forward. [More]

Site vs. reality, reflected in actual orders placed by CBS DFW reporter Cristin Severance  (photo: CBS DFW)

Don’t Be Shocked When Cheap Clothes Advertised On Facebook Aren’t What You Ordered

If you see an ad on Facebook pitching clothing for significantly less than what you’d pay in the store, you might be tempted to give it a shot. But be prepared to end up with a shirt, jacket, dress, or shoes that resemble the online photo as much as I resemble a young Carey Grant. [More]

Ad Watchdog Points Out That Skech-Air Shoes Do Not Let Kids Bounce Like Superhumans

Ad Watchdog Points Out That Skech-Air Shoes Do Not Let Kids Bounce Like Superhumans

When you’re a child with a very active imagination, the hyperbole of advertising can be very confusing. That’s why some consumers reported a recent ad for shoe brand Skechers to the Children’s Advertising Review Unit, part of the Council of Better Business Bureaus’ self-regulation mechanism for the advertising industry. The ad is misleading, making the shoes look way more fun than they are. [More]

(Myszka)

Coca-Cola, Pepsi Once Again Fund Study Claiming Diet Soda Is Better For You Than Water

Back in 2014, the soft drink industry funded a study that, coincidentally, concluded that diet soda is better for weight loss than water. These same companies are at it again, not only providing the backing for another study extolling the virtues of diet drinks, but also — according to new reports — directly paying money to the researchers involved. [More]

Wells Fargo Mocks Minnesota Vikings’ “Photo Bomb” Lawsuit

Wells Fargo Mocks Minnesota Vikings’ “Photo Bomb” Lawsuit

A few weeks back, the Minnesota Vikings sued Wells Fargo, accusing the bank of trying “photo bomb” the team’s new stadium. Wells has since fired back, calling the whole thing “far-fetched.” [More]

Schefter's Tweet should have been flagged as an ad for Domino's, but someone goofed and failed to mention this sponsorship.

ESPN Admits: Tweets By Adam Schefter & Chris Mortensen Were Unmarked Ads For Domino’s

Plenty of famous people post Tweets, Facebook updates, and Instagram photos where they mention a product or company name that they truly enjoy. But if those celebs are getting paid to slap their name on these messages, they need to be transparent about it. A pair of sportscasters at ESPN apparently missed that memo when they recently name-dropped Domino’s Pizza on Twitter. [More]

GQ Website Gives Ultimatum To Readers: Disable Ad-Blockers Or Pay Up

GQ Website Gives Ultimatum To Readers: Disable Ad-Blockers Or Pay Up

With ad-blocking apps and plugins preventing U.S. content companies from earning some $22 billion a year off your eyeballs, some sites are throwing down the gauntlet and demanding that readers pay up if they want to avoid ads. [More]

Minnesota Vikings Sue Wells Fargo For Attempting To “Photo Bomb” New Stadium

Minnesota Vikings Sue Wells Fargo For Attempting To “Photo Bomb” New Stadium


When you build a new multibillion-dollar stadium for an NFL franchise, you probably want to make sure that advertisers are paying for their name on or in the building, not just near it. And you probably want to ensure that those advertisers who do pay for their name on the building aren’t being overshadowed by the neighbors. Which is why the Minnesota Vikings are suing Wells Fargo. [More]

Car Dealers Can’t Scream “Zero Down On All Leases” If Most Buyers Won’t Qualify For Deal

Car Dealers Can’t Scream “Zero Down On All Leases” If Most Buyers Won’t Qualify For Deal

Car dealers are known for hyperbolic slogans like “Everybody rides!” or “Nobody walks away from our lot!,” but that sort of puffery is a far cry from repeatedly claiming that the advertised lease price includes “Zip, Zero, Zilch — Nothing Down!” only to hide the ugly truth in fine print that most people won’t understand. [More]

Eavesdropping Barbie, Books About Famous Brands, Bratz Selfie Sticks Lead List Of Year’s Crassest Toys

Eavesdropping Barbie, Books About Famous Brands, Bratz Selfie Sticks Lead List Of Year’s Crassest Toys

Not all toys are equal; just ask those ungrateful children who will throw a tantrum on Christmas morning for getting a GoBot instead of a Transformer (wait — that was me). But some kid-targeted products cross the line from being blah to being truly terrifying. [More]

Big Corn & Big Sugar Confidentially Settle 4-Year-Old False Advertising Lawsuit

Big Corn & Big Sugar Confidentially Settle 4-Year-Old False Advertising Lawsuit

A long-delayed four-year legal battle between Big Corn and Big Sugar has finally come to an end — not with a jury verdict, or with a judge throwing the case out, but with a confidential settlement that leaves a sour taste in everyone’s mouth. [More]

This screengrab, showing Yahoo was barring the user from accessing their e-mail account, was posted to the AdBlock Plus forum earlier this week. Yahoo subsequently confirmed that it is blocking some users from their Yahoo Mail accounts.

Use AdBlock And Yahoo May Block You From Reading Your E-Mail

If you still live in 2003 and have a Yahoo e-mail account but also use Ad Block to, ya know, block ads, then the folks at Yahoo might have a nasty surprise for you when you go to check your inbox. [More]

John Oliver Has Rewritten Those DraftKings & FanDuel Ads For You

John Oliver Has Rewritten Those DraftKings & FanDuel Ads For You

With daily fantasy sports sites DraftKings and FanDuel in a high-profile legal battle with New York state over whether they are a form of unlicensed gambling or games of skill, HBO’s John Oliver has released his own version of the sites’ infamous “anyone can win” ads. [More]