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AD COUNCIL TO TYCO TOYS: WITHDRAW YOUR CRASH DUMMIES

 NEW YORK, Dec. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The Advertising Council, for the first time in its 50-year history, today called on a manufacturer to stop selling a nationally advertised consumer product.
 The reason, the Council said: a new line of toys for children is jeopardizing an established public service ad campaign designed to save lives.
 In a letter to Tyco Industries, Inc. of Mt. Laurel, N.J., Ruth A. Wooden, president of the Ad Council, New York, requested that company's "agreement to withdraw The Incredible Crash Dummies' from the marketplace."
 The national television networks have declined to broadcast new public service TV messages from the Ad Council which use the seven-year old walking, talking crash dummies Vince and Larry to remind motorists to "buckle-up." The networks took the position that, with the advent of the Tyco toys, (plastic vehicles and 4-1/2 inch dummies that fly apart unless belted in when they collide), the Ad Council psa's can be seen as a form of unintended commercial promotion for the toys. The Ad Council did not criticize the network positions.
 The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation, sponsors of the Ad Council campaign since it began in 1985, had granted a six-months license last year to Tyco to market the toys, which closely resemble Vince and Larry, then allowed it to run out. As Ms. Wooden pointed out, the Ad Council registered opposition to licensing. The request to Tyco to stop selling the toys was an action taken only by the Ad Council.
 The Ad Council also said that continued promotion and marketing of the Tyco toys harms the trademark of the Vince and Larry characters, which like Smokey Bear and McGruff the Crime Dog are established and valuable symbols of Ad Council campaigns. Ms. Wooden requested a meeting with the chief executive of Tyco to pursue the matter. The idea of giving lifelike qualities of motion, human senses and intelligence to crash dummies was the creation seven years ago of Leo Burnett USA, the Chicago advertising agency that handles the safety belt campaign pro bono for the Ad Council. Since 1985 the safety belt messages have run in $304 million worth of advertising space and time donated by the media.
 -0- 12/10/92
 /CONTACT: Brad Lynch of The Advertising Council, 212-922-1500/


CO: Advertising Council; Tyco Industries, Inc. ST: New York, New Jersey IN: ADV HOU SU:

WB-SH -- NY057 -- 5837 12/10/92 13:47 EST
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Date:Nov 13, 1992
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