AMA Tells MSN It's Time To 'Say When'
If parents want to send their college student sons and daughters some alcohol related fun this semester, MSN won't be helping as Microsoft will be pulling advertisements for alcohol-related gifts from its MSN Internet service, following criticism from the American Medical Association.
MSN's back to school care packages featured a book of beer drinking games, a "microbrew kit," and other party products along with chocolate cookies, makeup and "Monty Python's Flying Circus" DVD sets.
On Aug. 24, the Chicago-based AMA sent a letter to MSN executives saying it seems "extremely misguided" to call such items care packages because of the dangers associated with underage drinking.
An MSN spokeswoman said MSN is careful to make sure products are marketed to the appropriate audiences.
"In this case it appears as though an error was made, and we are taking the necessary steps to remove the products," said the spokeswoman, who cited Microsoft policy that she not be identified by name.
"We have listened to the AMA's concerns and have responded by taken the necessary steps," she said.
The letter from AMA cited results of an upcoming AMA national poll showing that 95 percent of parents are very concerned about high-risk drinking on campus. Also cited in the letter was public health data that show nearly one in four college students is at risk of suffering alcohol-related harms, including sexual assault and other violence.