back to article Reebok used 'very fit woman' in buttock-related deception

Reebok has to fork over $25m to the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for talking out its arse about its butt-toning footwear. The FTC decided that Reebok had falsely claimed its EasyTone walking shoes and flip-flops and its RunTone running shoes could fight the flab on leg and buttock muscles. “The FTC wants national …

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  1. Baudwalk
    Headmaster

    Nice...

    ...err, I mean that's outrageous. Yes, that's it. Outrageous.

    Now, what was that she said about 11 percent harder?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Pint

      I DEMAND to examine the evidence!

      Without a "hands-on" investigation...we can not get to the BOTTOM of this outrage.

  2. Jess
    WTF?

    Seems a bit unfair.

    Assuming the things work like MBTs.

    I've been wearing a pair (of MBTs) on and off for about 18 months, and they definitely have a positive effect.

    Currently I have a 45 minute walk to and from work, and I would estimate that a week of this is about equivalent to an hour's yoga. (Focused on the lower back and backs of legs.) Obviously going for a walk in them is not a sensible alternative to the gym, but when it is otherwise dead time, it is worth the effort.

    I don't regret spending the £130 on the pair (and I'm a tight git).

    Fortunately I don't have an arse like that girl in the advert, because despite the name I am male.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You noticed an arse?

      Where?

      The FTC is wrong here as well. She naturally does not have a lot in that department (before any fitness comes to the equation).

    2. asdf Silver badge
      WTF?

      wow what

      You actually bought those shoes? Yoga too? Oh ok to each his own.

      1. Jess

        You actually bought those shoes? Yoga too?

        You need something to even out weight training and high impact aerobic classes.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Pint

          @Jess

          >You need something to even out weight training and high impact aerobic classes.

          I find a kebab usually balances things out after an evening of weight lifting.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      MBTs or TCTs?

      MBT's have other positive side effects you know.

      http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=tom+cruise+technology

    4. Jess--

      Another Male Jess on el-reg, I'm surprised

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. John McCallum
    Devil

    Shirley any running/walking shoe will get you firmer butt.Of course if you are a real lard arse then a diet does also help,no need to spend a fortune on fancy sports shoes.

    1. Jason Hall

      @John

      An old adage = you can't out-exercise a shitty diet.

      1. Solomon Grundy
        Meh

        Exercise > Diet

        Absolutely not true. You can eat anything you want as long as you exercise enough. The exercise enough part seems to be the part everyone is missing though. Granted the modern diet here is the U.S. takes a lot of exercise to overcome but it can still be done.

    2. Michael Dunn
      Coat

      IMHO the shoes are irrelevant - it's the running/walking which helps develop the fitness.

      For walking in wet weather.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yes, but these are supposed to make it quicker...and don't call me shirley....

      It's the same as Special K is low in fat (but stupidly high in sugar), if you eat that, you become a 6ft brunette with an hour glass figure.

      Advertising is designed to make you feel shit, but showing what you could be. So as a consequence they more shit you already feel about your life, the more you're likely to belive this shit.

      1. Wize

        "...but these are supposed to make it quicker..."

        So would attaching a brick to each ankle. And a shed load cheaper.

        But you'd have to get Reebok bricks for the fashion conscious.

      2. Number6

        Getting There

        I'm on my way, so far I've got the bottom half of the hourglass figure, just got to move the narrow bit down from my head to my waist.

  5. Mystic Megabyte Silver badge
    Happy

    Well, spank me with a flip-flop! That should tone up at least one muscle :)

  6. Swoop
    Coat

    Reebok have made an ass of themselves, and will shoe-ly be the butt of a few jokes.

    1. Thomas 4

      Yep

      It's come around to bite them in their muscley well-toned ass.

    2. darkmage0707077

      Punful

      I guess that was meant to be toungue-in-cheeks?

      I felt that one in my sole...

  7. Thomas 18
    Thumb Down

    $25,000,000

    To be held by the FTC and invested by the FTC. Consumers can apply for refunds directly to the FTC by filling in all the necessary paperwork and paying all administrative fees.

    Alternatively you can start paying lawyers and do it through the court.

    1. Eddy Ito Silver badge
      Coffee/keyboard

      "... invested by the" Feds?

      Now that would be a first. Poured into the monetary black hole is more like it.

    2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Facepalm

      RE: $25,000,000

      The number of intelligent women I know that got taken in by this and other "super-toning" items (please, FTC, look at Fitflops next) is just beyond belief! Even now, I have pointed them at the FTC website and they STILL prefer to believe that some miracle pair of shoes is going to do what only a proper exercise regime can. I'm not just talking Dizzy Janes here, the number even includes a GP doctor with the medical knowledge that should be able to see right through the scam, but she still insists "oh, they always use models, it's to show the possible outcome"!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Matt Bryant

        >The number of intelligent women

        Which probably pales into insignificance by the number fooled into buying anti-wrinkle creams pushed using models who aren't even old enough to have wrinkles in the first place.

    3. Disco-Legend-Zeke
      Joke

      Maybe They...

      ...could outsource the funds distribution to Nigeria.

  8. Richard Porter
    IT Angle

    And the IT angle is ...?

    Irrelevant Titillation.

    OK I'll buy that.

    1. Asiren
      Trollface

      It Angle

      The ruling had a website link.

      Natch.

  9. Pete 43
    Thumb Up

    she is indeed

    Well fit, isn't it

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      amazing and great

  10. adnim Silver badge

    I don't buy Reebok shoes because they have a Reebok logo on them. I can find perfectly comfortable and equally durable shoes for around one fifth the price.

    Yeah I know I miss out on the posing. My loss I guess ;-)

  11. Jean-Luc Silver badge
    IT Angle

    I'm shocked. Shocked.

    Using a model/athlete to demo exercise/diet products and fool the gullible into thinking they can look the same? Without effort, of course.

    Surprised that Reebok got spanked. They must have gone out of their way to exceed the already pretty high level of bovine excrement usually being bandied about.

    1. Michael Dunn

      Shocked yet again

      Yes, isn't this a bit like the former advertising practice of using an actor in a white coat to recommend health or dental products?

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Pictures don't lie

    She does have a nice "butt".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I disagree

      She has no butt at all. Merely the bit where her tanned lithe toned thighs meet her torso.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Outraged!

    Terrible, I'm so outraged I may have to watch that video a few more times, just to be sure i've properly examined it.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seriously it was clearly having a bit of a luaght and id rather the her butt than its target markets

  15. Inachu
    Devil

    Hmmm

    Is that very fit woman still single?

    I want to marry her asap!

    Then I'll buy those shoes too!

  16. Version 1.0 Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Good Start

    “The FTC wants national advertisers to understand that they must exercise some responsibility and ensure that their claims for fitness gear are supported by sound science,”

    GREAT - now if we can just get the FTC to look at political claims ...

  17. nyelvmark

    I've watched that video...

    ...173 times now, and I can't see the problem.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I had to watch that video 12 times...

    ...uh, what was the article about?

  19. Sam Stevens
    Joke

    Optional

    The cheek of it!

  20. Graham Marsden
    Facepalm

    What...?!

    You mean that when adverts for fitness gimmicks show incredibly toned and muscled athletic types demonstrating the products those people *didn't* get their bodies from simply using that product but actually do a lot of *other* exercise *and* eat properly?

    My illusions are shattered...!

  21. h4rm0ny

    Shoes...

    Reebok, like Nike, do make some very nice quality running shoes. But they're the expensive ones. The bottom of the range stuff they make is really no different to the no-name bottom of the range stuff. Like Intel, they have the expensive stuff, and then the Celerons. Don't assume just because they make some very good expensive shoes, that the cheap ones are any better.

    If you want some extremely good specialist shoes, by the way, check out the ones by inov8. No, I'm nothing to do with the company - I've just always liked their shoes a lot and they're worth a look if you want to be as fit as the lady in the ad. (Small print: some running may also be required).

    1. Evan Essence
      Thumb Up

      Inov-8

      Thanks for the tip. They look interesting and they're British. (I nearly didn't look because of their silly name!)

  22. OrsonX

    they should have claimed the shoes were in fact...

    feet make-up

    containing: tone-plumpy-fying-nano-ultra-arse-better-o-zomes*

    [*12 out of 105 women tested agreed]

  23. Darryl
    Meh

    OK, what's next?

    Pretty much every commercial for any 'health' or 'beauty' product is guilty of this.

    How about the ones where some average looking guy hoses himself down with some obnoxious smelling cologne spray and suddenly women are tearing his clothes off?

    Or the ones for women's mascara showing a model with what looks like a ferret glued to each eyelid?

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      I believe the company in question got done for the false-eyelash mascara advert.

      1. Darryl

        @Loyal Commenter

        You're right - saw that one again last night and in 3 point type along the bottom of the screen there's something about Dramatisation - false eyelashes used, or something like that.

    2. Gio Ciampa

      Ferrets

      Wonderfull what you can add in post-production these days...

  24. Geoff Smith
    Coat

    How did this get filed under Bootnotes?

    Oh wait, you don't have a Bootynotes section (yet).

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    " ... has been shown to increase hamstring and calf strength, and also to tone the buttocks."

    Full stop. Reebok's mistake, IM!HO, was to cite specific figures, leading one to assume that real research had been done. Tsk, tsk. Take a page from the supplement market: use "may", "has been shown to", and "our customers have reported" statements that sound scientifical enough to fool the masses but are not legally actionable. Armor up the legal diapers with a mice type "This product has not been evaluated by [name of governing authority]" disclaimer across the, er, bottom of the advert. Can not believe that for what Reebok charges for their product they can not afford to pay someone to vet their bullshit before it airs.

  26. Zack Mollusc
    WTF?

    What? Reebok lied about their shoes? Any word about their chairs? I bought a Reebok EasyTone chair because they said it would tone up my feet and get rid of my bunions. Was that a lie, too?

  27. Head
    Thumb Up

    Hmmm

    o.O

  28. Eddy Ito Silver badge

    That's why I'm a leg man

    I love the way they go up and make an arse out of themselves.

    1. Yet Another Commentard

      Plus they are one of the few things with a bottom at the top.

  29. Rattus Rattus

    I'll skip visiting the link, thanks. Muscled and/or skinny women with flat asses really don't do it for me.

  30. zanto
    Angel

    watched the clip and....

    I AGREE! .... I AGREE!

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That was ridiculous. This actually aired on TV? It screened like an amateur porn film where the girl ended up saying no. Somehow this feels like it wasn't meant to air.

    On the other hand, cute girl.

    Director: Okay, now, we need you to ride this guy with these shoes on, for $25.

    Girl: No way.

    D: Show your breasts?

    G:No

    D: Make Awkwardly wide stances while facing away from the camera so we can focus on your ass(ets), while you spout random bullshit?

    G: Alright, but quadruple the pay.

    At least the girl was able to get paid something decent (I hope).

  32. Big-nosed Pengie

    What?

    Ads lie? Preposterous!

  33. zen1

    sigh

    more conclusive proof that various departments of the government are nothing more than anal retentive, asexual pricks with no sense of humor.

  34. That Awful Puppy
    WTF?

    Where is my arse?

    She's quite pretty, and I love the fact that she hasn't had her chesticles turned into huge Bulgarian airbags, but she does not have an arse. Nothing there.

    I mean, my GF has an unfortunately flat arse, but compared to this fitness bunny, she's Ms. Lopez + the whole female cast of Sir Mixalot's most famous video (and pretty much every hip hop video ever since) combined.

    So, dear world, and especially my dear commentards, where the holy copulation is this going? Why do you find this appalingly flat piece of posterior musculature so appealing?

    (Sing the title to the tune of The Pixies' Where is my mind for extra loveliness.)

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      Obviously misleading

      The Reg article is.

      I have to agree with Puppy here - there is no arse at all in that ad!

  35. Flugal

    "The FTC wants national advertisers to understand that they must exercise some responsibility and ensure that their claims....are supported by sound science,”

    Wouldn't it be nice if churches were asked to do the same.

  36. Gav76

    How do you apply for a refund, send a picture of your ass to the FTC? Where they'll then compare it to a scale of 'representative bums' and if you're still fat send you money back?

    1. Mephistro Silver badge
      Joke

      @ Gav76

      "How do you apply for a refund, send a picture of your ass to the FTC?"

      That will never happen. The civil servants responsible for processing the photographs would end up blind. From tearing their own eyes out.

  37. GettinSadda
    Alert

    Meanwhile, in the UK

    Wow - good job they didn't try that over here!

    The ASA would have sent them a sternly worded letter requesting that they "not broadcast the advert in its current form in the future".

    Forget your $25m fines - that letter would really hurt!

  38. TRT Silver badge
    Facepalm

    They pulled the butt plug?

  39. Sweep

    Pedant

    "claimed......could fight the flab on leg and buttock muscles"

    No. they don't claim that. They do claim that they tone the muscles. Toning and fighting flab are different things (and targeted fat loss is a complete myth). Although try telling that to women that attend thighs bums and tums classes at the gym to develop magnificent abs and arses which then remain hidden under a big pile of flab.

  40. CD001

    Wow...

    ... and I thought adverts in the UK were bad - I hope that's not indicative of the general quality of American advertising.

  41. DaeDaLuS_015
    Facepalm

    outraged?

    They were so furious they felt the need to link to it from their own site and further promote it?

    /facepalm

  42. Ian Stephenson Silver badge
    Coat

    Reeboks helped me lose weight

    Reebok Silver Shadows - weight loss and fitness increase due solely to wearing them.

    Absolutely nothing to do with the shouty scary gentlemen in white vests with crossed swords logo chasing us.

    Can you guess the coat colour?

  43. Majid

    Great add.

    haven't listened to a word she said.

  44. Salamamba
    Thumb Up

    Sketchers tried using similar claims in the UK, but had to withdraw them within a week.

  45. bsix

    I Feel Soiled

    That's it really.

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At the risk of sounding like reverend lovejoy's wife I would have thought pornography laws were more appropriate.

    The unnatural angle she walks to the shoes at clearly shows she was told what the producer wanted, in fact she goes to noticeable effort to make sure her posterior is camera facing even when her face is.

    As for the camera work, it looks like a teenager who just got asked to film his mate and the misses.

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