Reader's Digest Association hits Web

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Reader's Digest Association, Pleasantville, N.Y., will launch a Web site with an international component in five languages as well as a navigation service called LookSmart in October. An interactive campaign from Modem Media, Westport, Conn. supports the launch.

The European advertising industry is beefing up its efforts to promote self-regulation in the face of new European Commission legislation with the launch of an Internet site and a revised statement of common aims and objectives. The Web site opens today.

The five-year-old European Advertising Standards Alliance - made up of 23 self-regulatory bodies from 21 countries - is stepping up its defense of self-rule in advance of the EC's decision on new laws to cover commercial communications.

"We want to promote self-regulation to a wider audience - to advertising professionals, to consumers and to the Commission," says Brussels-based EASA Director General Oliver Gray. "The web site gives greater credence to the fact that the industry is doing something about ensuring responsible communications..

Submissions to the EC on the "Commercial Communications" Green Paper are due in October, by which time the EASA plans to have ready its updated "Blue Book" of operating principles that apply in each co-operating country. "It'll be both a promotional document and a working document," says EASA Chairman Christopher Ogden. Several new aspects of the EASA service, such as the cross-border complaints process, will be given a high profile, along with areas of common practice and a section explaining the benefits of self- regulation. Ogden stresses that the new "Blue Book" is not a new code, but a description of existing principles.

The site has links with other sites established by national self-regulatory bodies in members of the Alliance. So far the hot links include the U.K. Advertising Standards Authority, the U.K. Broadcasting Advertising Clearance Centre and the Slovenian Advertising Association.

Copyright September 1996, Crain Communications Inc.

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