View Full Version : Truth in Advertising

11-07-2007, 08:03 AM
I haven't investigated it yet, but we might be able to get some of the scammers by bringing them to the attention of the FTC. Check out this site http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/buspubs/ad-faqs.shtm and apply the concept to publishing.

PA authors probably expect that they'll sell books, because that's what publishers do--they publish books for sale. When, in fact, they have no intention of selling books to anyone other than the authors, it seems to me that a reasonable person would identify their advertising as deceptive.

Anyone else?

AC Crispin
11-07-2007, 06:22 PM
When I organized PA letter writing campaigns One and Two, we wrote to the FTC. Unfortunately, nothing ever came of it. (We are talking in the neighborhood of 100 letters.)

Even when Steny Hoyer's office inquired of the FTC as to whether they had opened an investigation into PA's website with its deliberately deceptive advertising, the FTC ignored their inquries. Ignoring the Democratic Whip takes nerve.

As far as I've been able to determine, the FTC is useless in such cases.

And if anyone knows anyone who works for them, feel free to forward this message to them. As far as I'm concerned, they're not doing their job when it comes to the websites of scam agents and publishers.

I'm on the record here.

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair, Writer Beware

11-07-2007, 08:34 PM
The federal agencies like FTC, FCC and others are more of a reporting house for statistical information. They do as you say here... "nothing". The attorney generals office is the place to go. You can pm me and I will provide you with the e-mail of the director of the special crimes unit. From there he will direct you where to go. The letter writing campaigns then will have a purpose. Also the state senators office in your state is a good place to start the letter campaign as well. These other places do nothing and will send out a brochure may be or pamphlet but do nothing to stop these agencies or practices.

Way to take action! I will help anyway that I can.

AC Crispin
11-07-2007, 08:51 PM
During the two PA letter writing campaigns I masterminded, unhappy PA authors wrote to the following:

1. MD Attorney General's Office
2. The Governor of Maryland
3. The IRS
4. The FTC

Nothing came of any of it. And I know they got dozens of letters. The Governor's office admitted that they'd received close to a hundred.

Nothing was ever done. No investigation ever launched.

We have a new Governor of MD now, and, thus, a new Attorney General. I've considered trying it again, but our resources at Writer Beware are already pretty stretched, and I doubt it would do any good.

Besides, the people who should be organizing such a campaign are the PA authors themselves. And so far, nobody's stepped up to the plate to do anything in an organized fashion.

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair, Writer Beware

11-07-2007, 09:07 PM
That is to bad. The PA authors must step up to the plate and help themselves it sounds like. It is unfortunate that they are doing nothing -at least that we know of?

I know far too often the feelings of many folks is that "they don't want to get involved" or "take the time" not realizing that ignoring this issue is not right etc. Sounds like it may be the case here.