DSSRC Administrative Closure #158
The Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council (“DSSRC”) contacted a direct selling company (the “Company”) about two Facebook posts that were made by salesforce members of the Company. The first post conveyed strong health-related product claims including that the Company’s products combat COVID-19 and the second presented the earning opportunity afforded by selling the Company’s product as a way to make significant income during the pandemic.
The Company informed DSSRC that the Company was able to have both posts taken down and DSSRC independently confirmed the removal of both posts. The Company further informed DSSRC that it sent a reminder to all of its salesforce members regarding the Company’s policies regarding claim dissemination and that it was in the process of retaining a third-party monitoring service to help the Company ensure compliance with the Company’s policies.
During the pendency of its inquiry, DSSRC also became aware of a YouTube video testimonial that that was disseminated by a salesforce member of the Company. The video contained a statement that the salesforce member lost 20 pounds in a month while using the Company’s products and not exercising. DSSRC noted that, according to the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) “Gut Check: A Reference Guide for Media on Spotting False Weight Loss Claims, ” one statement made in advertising materials that experts say simply can’t be true is claim that the product safely enables consumers to lose more than three pounds per week for more than four weeks (https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/gut-check-reference-guide-media-spotting-false-weight-loss#claims). After DSSRC brought the video testimonial to the Company’s attention, the Company promptly had the video taken down.
As a result of the Company’s good faith actions to address DSSRC’s concerns, DSSRC administratively closed this inquiry.
(closed on 4/8/2021)