Diageo Fires Back at Latest Deceptive CAMY Report

Diageo Fires Back at Latest Deceptive CAMY Report

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Diageo fires back at latest deceptive CAMY report http://3bl.me/3ywfas
Thursday, January 14, 2016 - 4:45pm

CONTENT: Press Release

NORWALK, Conn., January 14, 2016 /3BL Media/ – The following statement is for attribution to Guy L. Smith, Executive Vice President, Diageo North America.  The latest report from the Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY) can be found here: http://www.camy.org/_docs/resources/reports/alcohol-advertising-monitoring/CAMY_CableTV_2015_Q1.pdf

“David Jernigan and his ‘research’ group, CAMY, have once again exposed the venerable Johns Hopkins University to embarrassment over CAMY’s biased and shoddy research.  Using tax-payer dollars, Jernigan and his group have launched a decade long war against the alcohol industry, exclaiming through salacious headlines that alcohol marketers are intentionally targeting youth through their advertising.  By funding this report, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention veers sharply away from their long history of basing activities and pronouncements on solid science. Alas, in this case the CDC is perpetuating junk science.

“One recent report from CAMY cited that U.S. youth watching television were exposed to alcohol advertisements daily, a 71% increase from eight years prior. The problem CAMY has, and the source of embarrassment that Johns Hopkins should feel for allowing CAMY to leverage the Johns Hopkins name, is that the scaremongering implied by this research simply doesn’t square with the facts.

“Intuitively one would expect that, as underage exposure went up, so would underage use; in fact, this is precisely the point that Jernigan is attempting to make.  However, government data repeatedly shows underage use is going down – steadily down – not up. In fact, just last month the Federal Government’s ‘Monitoring the Future’ survey, which measures underage drinking rates, revealed that the use of alcohol by American teenagers had reached its lowest point since the study began in 1975. 

“If Jernigan is correct, and underage exposure to advertising is indeed going up, then one might reasonably conclude that increased exposure is then leading to decreased use.   You didn’t read that wrong, but it bears repeating.  Assuming Jernigan believes underage drinking is bad, then following his own logic, CAMY should be arguing for increasing underage exposure, since underage use is going down.  There lies the Catch 22 in which propagators of junk science often find themselves.  When ultimately faced with accurate data and actual facts, their attention-grabbing press releases lead to absurd conclusions.  What is truly unfortunate is that institutions that lend their credibility to the likes of CAMY find their own reputations tarnished when the real motives of these ‘researchers’ are exposed.”

Note to editors: On four separate occasions, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has conducted audits on alcohol advertising and has found “high levels of compliance” with what was then the industry’s 70% adult audience target.  In the 2014 report, based on 2011 ads, the FTC found more than 93% of all television, radio, print and online/other digital ad placements met the 2011 standard of 70%.

For information on Diageo’s marketing code and responsibility practices, please visit http://www.diageo.com/en-us/ourbusiness/aboutus/corporategovernance/Pages/codes-policy.aspx#dmc and http://www.diageo.com/en-us/csr/alcoholinsociety/Pages/default.aspx .