Grounding Nike: Exposing Nike's Quest for a Constitutional Right to Lie
50 Pages Posted: 18 Mar 2011
Date Written: March 14, 2011
Although the Nike v. Kasky case was widely reported to involve Nike's attempt to "defend" itself against its critics, in this article I demonstrate that according to textbook descriptions of the practice Nike was actually engaged in a form of marketing – reactive marketing PR. This marketing was designed to improve sales of its products in the wake of criticism of its labor practices and consumer backlash in response to those criticisms. Kasky claimed in his lawsuit that many of the statements Nike's representatives made in its defense were knowingly and intentionally false and he charged that they constituted fraud. The pleadings in the case reveal (despite widespread reportage to the contrary) that Nike hoped to raise a First Amendment defense to fraud.
Keywords: First Amendment, Nike v. Kasky, Marketing, Fraud, Public Relations, False Advertising, Reactive Marketing PR
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