CMD and Consumer Reports WebWatch Launch Full Frontal Scrutiny

"The American public deserves to know when someone is trying to persuade them." — U.S. Federal Communications Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein, Thursday, January 17, 2008

Front Groups Beware of Full Frontal Scrutiny

Front Groups - Appearances May Be DeceptiveToday, the Center for Media and Democracy and our partners at Consumer Reports WebWatch launched an exciting new project: Full Frontal Scrutiny. The site seeks to shine a light on front groups -- organizations that state a particular agenda, while hiding or obscuring their identity, membership or sponsorship, or all three. Google the term "front groups" and the number one return is CMD's extensive articles on its SourceWatch site.

Once Again, Drug Companies Caught Data Doping

The pharmaceutical companies Merck and Schering-Plough, which co-market the cholesterol drug Vytorin, "have gone into damage-control mode, taking out newspaper ads." The PR campaign follows the companies' reluctant publication of a study showing that neither of the drugs present in Vytorin "reduced the buildup of fatty plaque in arteries." The study "


News Director Sickened by Proposed Hospital Agreement

"I could not with a clear conscience go into that newsroom and tell the staff that this was a good thing," explained former WEAU-13 news director Glen Mabie. Mabie resigned from the northwest Wisconsin television station "because of a disagreement ...


Drug Ads Raise Legislators' Blood Pressure

The U.S. Congress is investigating "the pharmaceutical industry's use of celebrity endorsements in direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertisements." First up are ads for Pfizer's cholesterol drug Lipitor, which feature the inventor of the artificial heart, Dr. Robert Jarvik.


Safety Suppressed

A former statistician for the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) has accused the agency of "suppressing scientific research" and "silencing the life-saving research happening in its buildings." Robin Ingle says the CPSC has repeatedly bowed to pressures from industry and failed to place tighter restrictions on dangerous products. As an example, she points to delays in publication of reports showing a rise in deaths from All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs), while CPSC's general counsel, a former attorney for the ATV industry, tried to force staff to change the language in the report.



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