Agency Publicity in the Internet Era

112 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2016 Last revised: 4 Nov 2016

See all articles by Nathan Cortez

Nathan Cortez

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law

Date Written: September 25, 2015


This Report, prepared for the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS), details how federal agencies use modern forms of publicity - including press releases, agency web sites, searchable online databases, and social media - to achieve regulatory ends. It evaluates the benefits and burdens of modern agency publicity practices, using three agencies as case studies: the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); the Federal Trade Commission (FTC); and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Part V recommends a series of largely procedural reforms that balance the need for public disclosure with the need to protect those potentially injured by adverse agency publicity.

This Report formed the basis for Administrative Conference Recommendation 2016-1, Consumer Complaint Databases, adopted at the June 10, 2016 Plenary Session. See 81 Fed. Reg. 40249 (Jun. 21, 2016).

Keywords: administrative law, publicity, social media, FDA, FTC, CFPB, press releases, information law

Suggested Citation

Cortez, Nathan, Agency Publicity in the Internet Era (September 25, 2015). SMU Dedman School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 337, Available at SSRN: or

Nathan Cortez (Contact Author)

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 750116
Dallas, TX 75275
United States
(214) 768-1002 (Phone)

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