The U.S. Supreme Court is poised to clarify the extraterritorial reach of the Lanham Act for the first time in seventy years. The decision will impact corporations’ ability to seek damages for international trademark infringement, and may resolve a circuit split on the applicability of the Lanham Act on foreign defendants’ foreign conduct. The Court will review the Tenth Circuit’s decision in Abitron Austria GmbH et al. v. Hetronic International Inc. (“Hetronic”) and the extraterritoriality of the Lanham Act, seemingly the Court’s desired outcome after requesting the United States weigh in on Abitron Austria GmbH’s (“Abitron”) certiorari petition filed in January 2022.
On October 25, 2021, the FTC announced that it will seek to impose prior approval provisions on merging parties in all future consent decrees. These provisions will require parties to merger consent decrees to request formal Commission approval before closing any future transactions in the same market, and potentially adjacent markets, regardless of whether those subsequent transactions are reportable under the HSR Act. This shift reinstates a policy abandoned by the FTC in 1995, and seeks to provide the Commission the unilateral ability to block future transactions it views as problematic, without having to carry the legal burden in court.
Continue Reading FTC Plans to Impose Prior Approval Requirements for Future Transactions
Vizio Reaches $2.2 Million Settlement With FTC, New Jersey, For Failing to Obtain Viewer Consent to Track and Sell Viewing Habits to Third Parties
Traditionally, advertisers purchase ad inventory during television programs based on basic demographic information regarding viewer attributes. Thus, while ads may reach viewers of a particular gender and age range, those ads may not necessarily reach the consumers that are most interested in their products or services. Thus, advertisers are increasingly interested in more finely targeting their advertising and sending a specific television commercial to a specific household based on the viewing activities in that household. In order to pinpoint their targets, marketers rely on data extending beyond demographic information that includes information on consumer viewing and internet habits. While targeting commercials to specific households can be highly beneficial to marketers (allowing them to send their ads to the consumers most interested in seeing them) and consumers (showing them the ads they most want to see), marketers must remember that the basic requirements of advertising law still apply. Thus, in collecting data, marketers must ensure that they clearly disclose their data collection practices up front, obtain consent from consumers before collecting and sharing highly specific information regarding their viewing practices, and make it easy for consumers to opt out.
The incoming administration promises big changes to federal consumer protection administration and enforcement. On January 5, 2017, Crowell & Moring’s Advertising & Product Risk Management Group hosted a webinar in which they discussed likely changes on the horizon to the Federal Trade Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
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Crowell & Moring is pleased to announce two upcoming presentations regarding consumer protection regulation and enforcement and what President Obama’s second turn will mean for retailers (as well as manufacturers and distributors). With the re-election of President Obama, we can expect the government to continue to add to the existing federal regulations. The discussion panel, which includes former agency …
As of March 11, 2011, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) will begin publishing “reports of harm” it receives on consumer products under its jurisdiction. Obviously, this will have wide-ranging impact on manufacturers and private labelers of consumer products. Now is the time to get procedures in place to handle the new database. We’ll be tracking developments on the CPSC’s implementation of its publicly available database.
Continue Reading CPSC Issues Draft Final Rule Establishing a Publicly-Available Product Safety Information Database