Commercial Alert Site Targets Pharma Ads

NEW YORK Commercial Alert stepped up its criticism of the pharmaceutical industry’s marketing tactics with the launch of a Web site advocating a ban on direct-to-consumer drug advertising.

The site,, features animation depicting a patient and doctor in a conversation interrupted by three drug company executives. The copy reads: “Do you want drug executives telling you you’re sick?”

Consumer Alert launched the destination to coincide with the Food and Drug Administration’s public comment period about pharmaceutical advertising. encourages visitors to send comments to the FDA via an online form.

Commercial Alert is a longtime critic of pharmaceutical industry’s marketing. In October, it began a campaign to end DTC pharmaceutical advertising. The role of consumer advertising has been under scrutiny in the aftermath of Merck’s decision to withdraw Vioxx from the market.