AAAA, ANA Push FCC on Product-Placement Rules

Advertisers and agencies are trying to get the Federal Communications Commission to seek more comment and information before deciding to adopt new rules on product placement.

In a meeting Monday with FCC commissioner Robert McDowell, representatives of the American Association of Advertising Agencies and Association of National Advertisers said that if the FCC did anything, it should open an inquiry rather than proposing rule changes.

According to a filing at the FCC, they argued that the commission's existing sponsorship-identification rules are sufficient and cited the Federal Trade Commission's 2005 finding that no action was warranted on product placement absent a showing that it was unfair, deceptive or harmful.

Adonis Hoffman of the AAAA and Daniel Jaffe of the ANA said their associations would also like to clarify for the FCC the different types of product placement, including the differences between paid endorsers, products that are "embedded" in programming but are not sponsored, products that are embedded but make no claim about a product and paid-for product integration.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.