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Paul Zimmerman
pzimmerman@mrllp.com
310.299.5500

Showing 59 posts in Advertising & Digital Media.

Advertising & Digital Media
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The Business and Practice of Law: Five Emerging Legal Trends to Watch

Law firms are dynamic and ever-changing, as is the marketplace for legal services. That being said, in my capacity as the Los Angeles Office Managing Partner at Michelman & Robinson, LLP, I am hyper aware of shifting behaviors and technological advancements that move the needle relative to the business and practice of law.

With 2022 fast approaching, I have identified five trends emerging within the legal industry that will shape law firm operations, recruitment and the client experience in the new year. The good news is that M&R has been well ahead of the curve when it comes to all of them, allowing the firm to differentiate itself among its peers, Big Law included, here in L.A. and throughout the country. (Read More

Advertising & Digital Media
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It’s Beginning to Sound a Lot Like Christmas: A Brief Overview of Holiday Songs and Their Copyright Implications

The holidays are just around the corner, which means the Christmas songs we know and love are soon to be heard over and over again. No doubt about it, it’s the most wonderful time of the year when it comes to the holiday standbys about to permeate the airwaves.

The month of December is especially wonderful for the lucky few cashing in on the music that brings such joy to the world. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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gajus-images © depositphotos.com

The Reins Have Loosened Under the TCPA, at Least Temporarily

We have all received them, those unsolicited—and unwanted—calls regarding our supposed student loans, credit card debt, troubles with the IRS, even health insurance opportunities. While the subject matter varies, the calls are a constant, as is the nuisance factor. And that, in a nutshell, is what prompted enactment of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) back in 1991. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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Felix Lipov © 123RF.com

A “Reason to Believe” the FTC Is Quite Unhappy

In a complete turnabout, a Northern District Court in Georgia recently reversed itself and dealt a significant blow to the Federal Trade Commission, limiting its capacity to state claims against defendants for consumer fraud. In FTC vs. Hornbeam Special Situations, LLC, the court held that the Commission could no longer seek to punish bad actors based solely on past behavior. Instead, currently existing or threatened violations of the FTC Act must be alleged for the FTC to bring a successful action against any defendant accused of bilking consumers. (Read more)

Advertising & Digital Media
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David Pino © 123RF.com

Pfizer Settles With New York Attorney General Over "Pay No More Than" Claims

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer probably wishes it had to “pay no more than” $15 to settle allegations brought by the New York Attorney General, but actual penalties recently levied against the company by the AG are quite a bit steeper.

The settlement in question stems from Pfizer deceptively marketing a copayment coupon program. The problematic copayment coupons stated in large, clear text that eligible consumers would “PAY NO MORE THAN” $15 or $20 out-of-pocket for certain drugs. This was untrue. In fact, consumers frequently paid significantly more than the amounts advertised on the coupons because prearranged limits on total savings were not prominently disclosed. Indeed, Pfizer allowed the coupons to be distributed to consumers without clearly and conspicuously setting forth the promotions’ material terms and conditions. As a consequence, at least one person who believed a prescription would cost “no more than” $15 ended up paying nearly $145 at a pharmacy cash register. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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Vadim Ginzburg © 123RF.com

A Formula for Trouble: New York AG Settles With Abbott Labs Over Misleading Surveys

Abbott Labs, the maker of Similac infant formula, found itself in some hot water after sending misleading marketing surveys to new parents. The surveys, ostensibly sent by the “National Institute of Infant Nutrition,” sought information about the recipients’ demographics and their infants’ feeding habits. In terms of the latter, the survey asked, whether or not babies had been breast-fed and, if formula-fed, the brand of formula parents used. The problem is that when the surveys were sent, there was no known entity named the “National Institute of Infant Nutrition (NIIN),” and Abbott used the survey information for its own marketing purposes. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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inbj © 123RF.com

The Consumer Review Fairness Act: Compliance and the Quest for Transparent Customer Assessment

In the age of Yelp, Facebook Amazon and Trip Advisor, most people make purchasing, dining, travel and entertainment decisions based on reviews posted by fellow consumers. These reviews are critical for both would-be customers and businesses, and it is crucial that they honestly reflect the quality of a company’s products, services and customer service. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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Wavebreak Media Ltd © 123RF.com

The GDPR Comes to the Golden State

California has hopped on the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) bandwagon with the California Consumer Privacy Act just signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown. The new data privacy law – which was unanimously approved by the state legislature and is the strictest in the U.S. – is GDPR-like to the extent it allows consumers to control how their personal data is collected, processed and shared. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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Tracy Le Blanc © pexels.com

Social Media Influencers Who Pay . . . No Way

If your company promotes itself through social media with the help of influencers, then it is a participant in the influencer economy. But because influencers come with a price, you must consider if they are worth the money — and just how influential they truly are.

Companies spend mightily to attach themselves to online tastemakers and social media stars (those with impressive numbers of followers). These individuals — from actors and athletes to mom bloggers and teenage Instagram and Snapchat giants — leverage their booming popularity and social media presence in exchange for lucrative deals with brands. Need proof? An influencer with a million followers can earn upwards of $20,000 for a single promotional tweet. (Read More)

Advertising & Digital Media
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amuzica © depositphotos.com

Costco Takes Its Coffee with Cream and a Civil Penalty

The Federal Trade Commission doesn’t have a monopoly on consumer fraud claims – just ask the folks at Costco.

Recently, the District Attorney of Alameda County in California joined with 24 other DA’s in the state in settling a case against Costco Wholesale Corporation and JBR, Inc., a coffee company better known as San Francisco Bay Gourmet Coffee and the Rogers Family Company. Costco and JBR agreed to pay a total of $500,000 in civil penalties and costs stemming from untrue and misleading marketing claims made on plastic coffee pods sold by the companies. (Read More)