FTC: Record Biz Ignoring Its Own Stickering Plan
In a follow-up to last year's study on the marketing of violent entertainment product to children, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) yesterday (April 24) released a report lambasting the recordIn a follow-up to last year's study on the marketing of violent entertainment product to children, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) yesterday (April 24) released a report lambasting the record industry.
In the new report, the FTC says the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) reneged on its own suggestions and those of the commission. These included the label group's plan to include parental-advisory stickers in print ads and to give clear notice of stickered material at stores and retail Web sites through all phases of a transaction.
RIAA president/CEO Hilary Rosen says in a statement that the new study "followed too quickly on the heels of our implementation of these new efforts." Bipartisan leaders of the Senate Commerce Committee issued a statement critical of the industry but stopped short of calling for legislation.
Industry reaction mainly showed support of stickering. Says Danny Goldberg, chairman/CEO of Artemis Records, "The FTC made two main points: one reasonable, that the industry show parental stickers in ads, and one unreasonable, that children under 17 shouldn't be allowed to buy stickered albums. This is not appropriate."
In related news, on Monday the RIAA and the National Association of Record Merchants (NARM) sent a letter of support to the major movie studios in an appeals court case involving children's watchdog group Citizens for Fair Treatment. The group filed a deceptive-advertising lawsuit against the studios last year. In the letter, NARM president Pam Horovitz says the suit "serves as a perfect example of what could happen to [labels and retailers] -- exposing us to liability for failing to enforce voluntary guidelines."
The FTC's third study on marketing violence to children, expected this fall, will focus on retail.