Judge Rules RJR Cartoon Ads Targeted Kids

2007 Camel ad that appeared in Rolling Stone magazineA Philadelphia judge has ruled that R.J. Reynolds (RJR) violated a provision of the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement that prohibits tobacco companies from using cartoons to sell cigarettes to minors. In November 2007, RJR ran cartoon-like ads in Rolling Stone magazine promoting Camel cigarettes. The ads -- titled "The Farm: Free Range Rock" -- bore the iconic, silhouetted Camel logo and used whimsical pictures of farm animals to promote the company's support of independent rock bands. Judge William J. Manfredi gave RJR the choice of paying a fine of $302,000 or running a full-page anti-smoking ad in a Rolling Stone edition that circulates in Pennsylvania. In making his ruling, Manfredi declared that RJR had violated its pledge not to pitch cigarettes to kids because the ad juxtaposed cartoon illustrations next to an ad for Camel cigarettes.