FDA Provides "Guidance" on Internet Marketing

Late last week the FDA provided some guidance on Internet marketing. While I have seen a fair amount of uproar regarding the lack of clarity in the guidance, I think workable solutions can be found.

Via the WSJ:
There’s no question the Food and Drug Administration is moving to crack down on drug-company advertising appearing on the Internet, issuing warning letters to 14 companies recently. But just how the companies are supposed to comply isn’t clear, writes the New York Times.

I wrote in a previous post about an excellent interview eyeonfda.com did with the FDA. It is linked here.

When it comes to Internet marketing in general I think the FDA is asking for some common sense in marketing practices and to take all precaution to provide appropriate disclaimer information. Regardless of the medium the message is the same. You must provide as much information as possible so the risk information is available to the consumer. Do you think they want to play the police or they have to play the police because marketers stretch the guardrails provided. Of course FDA doesn't provide definite rules, because if they did then people would find a way to get around them.

However, it is nearly impossible to provide risk info in a text search ad. Let me rephrase that--it is impossible. Here some decisiveness from the FDA is needed and since the FDA is under the first "digital POTUS" it makes sense to me that they provide some clear guidance and establish new rules that take the unique elements of marketing via the Internet into account versus modifying TV/Print guidelines to the Internet.

Here are a few clear examples of how disclaimer info is provided in commercials. If you have seen the recent Yaz commercial that basically says, "yes, we tried to skirt the rules and we got caught" or the Abilify "if you listen carefully to what this drug could do to you then you may be less depressed."







| www.jlefevere.com |


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