According to industry surveys, over 70 million people in the United States now have access to the Internet and, as most users have noticed, the Internet contains a large volume ofadvertising. Intermedia Advertising Solutions estimated that revenue fromon-line advertising reached $1.03 billion in 1998. (“BBDO New York EntersCyberspace in a Big Way,” New York Times,Aug. 31, 1999.) JupiterCommunications estimates that on-line advertising revenues will reach $3.02billion this year and $11.05 billion by 2003. (“Study: $11.5 Billion WebAd Spending Expected by 2003,” Bloomberg News,Aug. 18, 1999.)
The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) is diligently studying and policing on-line advertising. The agency requested comments and recently held a workshop on how it should interpret and apply various marketing rules and guides in cyberspace. The FTC also aggressivelypolices the Internet and brings enforcement actions against those engagedin fraudulent and deceptive practices, such as pyramid schemes and loanscams, as well as legitimate marketers who run afoul of the FTC Act andvarious category-specific rules and guides.
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