CNN To Require Celebrities To Disclose Drug Company Ties

"After learning that some celebrities who talked on its news programs about their health problems were being paid by drug companies, CNN has issued a new policy and will tell viewers about the stars' financial ties to corporations," New York Times' Melody Petersen writes. In an August 11 Times article, Petersen revealed the widespread testimonial practice. Petersen reports stars like Lauren Bacall and Kathleen Turner "had been paid to help promote drugs or other medical products" on network morning "news" programs. PR pro Bill Daddi complains that the new disclosure policy is hypocritical: "Was CNN not aware that virtually all celebrity appearances on its network and other news organizations are driven by the fact that the celebrity is there to promote something, usually something like, say, their movie? Why else does CNN think celebrities make appearances on its shows, because they missed the anchors?"