Alcohol and Drugs News on the Internet

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New guidelines set to go into effect next week restrict access to alcohol companies’ official brand pages on Facebook and other networking sites, to adults of legal drinking age.

The guidelines, drafted by the alcohol industry, are scheduled to take effect September 30, The Wall Street Journal reports. They apply to all branded digital marketing communications, including social networking sites, blogs and mobile communications. They call for alcohol marketers to promote responsible drinking and to monitor their sites for inappropriate content. Alcohol websites will have instructions that encourage people only to forward promotions to adults 21 and older.

The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) and the European Forum for Responsible Drinking developed the new guidelines. DISCUS currently calls on alcohol marketers to restrict their advertising to media where at least 71.6 percent of the audience is expected to be of legal drinking age. Visitors to branded alcohol websites must enter their birth date in an effort to prevent minors from viewing them.

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