Washington, D.C. – Industry leaders, government officials and digital media experts from across the country gathered November 14th in Washington, D.C. at the Distilled Spirits Council’s (DISCUS) Sixth Annual Best Practices Media Summit for a full-day conference focusing on social media and compliance with the DISCUS Responsible Advertising Code.
“This year’s DISCUS Media Summit once again provided all industry segments with information about best practices in alcohol marketing self-regulation, including in the new media landscape,” said Janet Evans of the Federal Trade Commission.
The Summit featured speakers from the FTC, experts in social media disciplines, and top executives from social networking sites and syndicated demographic data sources, including Facebook, Google/YouTube, Twitter, Foursquare, Nielsen, and comScore.
This year’s Summit began with a discussion by Janet Evans regarding the FTC’s 2014 Self-Regulation Report, which for the first time contained substantial information about alcohol marketing in the digital era, including in social media.
Following the FTC presentation, there was a session reviewing DISCUS’ social media marketing guidelines, which went into effect September 30, 2011. The guidelines apply to all branded digital marketing communications and were developed jointly by DISCUS and the European Forum for Responsible Drinking, an alliance of Europe’s leading spirits companies.
Sessions also showcased Code compliant tools available for use with social media platforms, including innovative techniques and technologies to moderate user-generated content on social media sites and to appropriately engage with brand page visitors. There were also panel discussions on data privacy issues and product endorsements in social media activities.
“The Distilled Spirits Council is the only trade association to gather an entire industry – from new entrants to fierce competitors – to enhance industry-wide compliance on responsible advertising,” said Carolyn Panzer, Chair of the Distilled Spirits Council Code Review Board.  “These Summits ensure that the industry’s collective commitment to effective self-regulation remains steadfast in both traditional and emerging marketing platforms.”
The DISCUS Code of Responsible Advertising Practices has been cited as a model for other industries and has been commended on numerous occasions by regulators, industry watchdogs and the media.  To learn more about the Code of Responsible Practices for Beverage Alcohol Advertising and Marketing, and Code Review Board decisions, please click here.