Ad, not story | BrainerdDispatch.com | Brainerd, Minnesota

Ad, not story

Posted: October 12, 2012 - 6:17pm

Ad, not story

I would like to comment on the half-page advertisement on page 3A of the Brainerd Dispatch on Wednesday, Oct. 10. It appears in many details to be an article entitled “Seniors Fear Loss of Independence More Than Death,” but is in fact an advertisement for a “drug-free compound” that claims to “restore 10-15 years of memory.”

Only after careful examination did I find the nearly microscopic disclaimer at the bottom that “this product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.”

There is nothing anywhere on the page to indicate that it is a paid advertisement, and someone who is not looking carefully could easily assume that the article was written by a reporter and endorsed by the Brainerd Dispatch.

Given that seniors are among the more susceptible groups to fraudulent claims, placing such an advertisement among other news pieces without clearly stating its true nature is problematic, at best. I realize that the newspaper business is experiencing tough times, but those who subscribe to the print edition surely deserve to know the source of what they are reading.

Laurel M. Hall

Baxter