FTC To Host September Workshop On Testing Effectiveness of Consumer Disclosures

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For Release

The Federal Trade Commission will host a public workshop on Sept. 15, 2016, to examine the testing and evaluation of disclosures that companies make to consumers about advertising claims, privacy practices, and other information. The workshop, called “Putting Disclosures to the Test,” is aimed at encouraging and improving the evaluation and testing of disclosures by industry, academics, and the FTC.

Effective disclosures are critical in helping consumers make informed decisions in the marketplace. The FTC has a long commitment to understanding and testing the effectiveness of consumer disclosures, and is especially interested in learning about the costs and benefits of disclosure testing methods in the digital age.

Among the areas where disclosures play a key role in consumer protection are:

  • disclosures in advertising  designed to prevent ads from being deceptive;
  • privacy-related disclosures, including privacy policies and other mechanisms to inform consumers that they are being tracked;
  • disclosures in specific industries designed to prevent deceptive claims, including  jewelry, environmental claims, and fuel economy advertisements.

The FTC’s workshop will explore how to test the effectiveness of these disclosures to ensure consumers notice them, understand them, and can use them in their decision-making.

The FTC is soliciting presentation proposals for the event, which may be submitted to disclosuretesting@ftc.gov. More information on the proposal process is available on the workshop’s website.

Members of the public may also submit comments for the workshop online. The public comment period will remain open until Nov. 2, 2016.

The workshop is free and open to the public. It will be held at the Constitution Center, 400 7th St., SW, Washington, DC 20024. Information about reasonable accommodations is available on the workshop website.

The Federal Trade Commission works to promote competition, and protect and educate consumers. You can learn more about consumer topics and file a consumer complaint online or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357).  Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, read our blogs and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.

Contact Information

MEDIA CONTACT:
Jay Mayfield
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-2181

STAFF CONTACT:
Lorrie Cranor
Chief Technologist
202-326-3322

Michael Ostheimer
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-2699