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February 2006
Notwithstanding the fact that it has been over 35 years since Congress banned cigarette ads from the airwaves, broadcasters continue to ask for advice on whether they may air certain types of tobacco-related advertisements. In fact, questions in this area of law appear to be on the increase. One reason is the proliferation of small, independent cigarette manufacturers resulting from the 1998 tobacco settlement. That settlement has caused the price of cigarettes to rise, thereby making it profitable for small companies to become cigarette manufacturers. Given the pressure that these manufacturers and their retail outlets are likely to place on broadcasters to help in promoting these new tobacco products, we offer the following Q&A to aid broadcasters in complying with tobacco advertising restrictions should they be asked by any company to air tobacco-related spots . . . article continues