Federal rules could affect NASCAR endorsements


Well-Known Member
Nov 6, 2008
Very interesting read IMO. I think there are much larger things for the Federal Trade Commission to worry about.....

When #99-Carl Edwards broke his foot playing Frisbee last month there were jokes about how fortunate he was to be sponsored by AFLAC, which sells disability insurance. Edwards even made reference to the obvious irony and talked about filing a claim and getting a check. NASCAR fans are so used to drivers hawking their sponsors' products - and dropping the sponsor's name in every TV interview - that they rarely think twice about it. That's what drivers do when they aren't driving. But pretty soon drivers might have to do something else if they find themselves endorsing a sponsor's product. They might have to disclose that the sponsor is paying them to do it. The Federal Trade Commission this week issued new guidelines for those who endorse products. There is a new requirement that endorsers - whether it's a lowly blogger or a high-profile actor or athlete - must say if they are being paid by that company. So, how would this affect NASCAR, the most blatantly commercial sport around? Depends on the context. So says David Zetoony, an attorney specializing in consumer product-liability cases with the firm Bryan Cave. For instance, when Edwards does a commercial for AFLAC, it is understood by not only NASCAR fans, but also by the public at large that he's being paid to do so or that it's part of his obligation to his sponsor. And when he gives an interview standing in front of his AFLAC Ford, wearing his AFLAC driver suit and says something like "the #99 AFLAC Ford Fusion was awfully fast today," he's also in the clear. That's considered product placement, Zetoony said, and it won't get a driver in hot water with the FTC. What will cause trouble is when an athlete takes it a step further and endorses a product. But again, context is important. So if Tony Stewart gives a TV interview and is asked to name his favorite hamburger and he says "I never eat anything but flame-broiled Burger King Whoppers," he'd be required to disclose his relationship to BK. If he said, "I never eat anything but those juicy Whoppers my sponsor Burger King makes," he'd be OK. Confused? You aren't alone. It's going to take time and probably litigation to sort out where the lines will be drawn.


2000 Man
Oct 23, 2008
This should apply to politicians too then. Every time a politician says they're for something then they should give the name of the lobbying firm paying them for their vote.