Big Tobacco’s Global Reach on Social Media

So the industry that brought the world the Marlboro Man, Joe Camel and slogans like “Reach for a Lucky Instead of a Sweet” has latched onto the selfie generation’s screens in a highly adaptive way that skirts the advertising rules of old.

The petition claims that Philip Morris International, British American Tobacco, Japan Tobacco International and Imperial Brands are targeting young American consumers with deceptive social media marketing in violation of federal law.

The petition calls on the F.T.C.

Jonathan Duce, a spokesman for Japan Tobacco, said company-involved events were intended “to switch existing adult smokers to our brands from those of our competitors.” “If smokers or vapers choose to share their social activity,” he added, “it is completely their choice.” Simon Evans, a spokesman for Imperial Brands, acknowledged that the company paid “public opinion formers” to attend and post social media content about promotional events.

“Where this is the case, however, we make it clear to them they are not to post branded content,” Mr. Evans said.

After a press inquiry, BAT said they would take down the post.

All this considering Brazil’s legal restrictions of cigarette advertising.” Mr. Nastari did not respond to a reporter’s inquiry, but these notes are no longer available on LinkedIn.

The New York Times reached out to the social media posters included in this article.

“Across the BAT Group, we are clear that social media can only be used for activities that do not involve the advertising of any of our cigarette brands,” Mr. Cleverly said in an email.

The petition filed by the antismoking advocacy groups asks the F.T.C.

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