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Christian TV-Watchdog Group Ends Boycott on Clorox

April 28, 1990|STEVE WEINSTEIN

A Christian watchdog group that instituted a one-year boycott of Clorox Corp. and Mennen Co. last summer for sponsoring television programs that it claimed contained "high incidents of sex and violence" has called off the action against Clorox.

Christian Leaders for Responsible Television (CLeaR-TV), a group founded by the Rev. Donald Wildmon, said this week that it was ending the boycott three months early because Clorox had reduced its sponsorship of programs that the group found offensive.

David L. Goodman, Clorox's vice president of public affairs, insisted Friday that the company had not changed any of its guidelines for sponsoring television programs as a result of the boycott, but said that it had found that those guidelines had not been enforced as strictly as they should have been last May, when CLeaR-TV monitored all prime-time shows in an effort to determine the country's "two dirtiest sponsors." Specifically, Goodman said, Clorox should not have advertised during episodes of "Miami Vice."

Goodman said that Clorox was not buckling under to the group, and he insisted that the company had done nothing except correct some flaws in a system that had long been in place.

CLeaR-TV claimed that the boycott had resulted in a drop in sales of Clorox products. While Goodman would not comment on that directly, he said that company sales were up more than 11% during the nine-month boycott period over what they were for the same period the previous year.

CLeaR-TV also announced that the boycott of Mennen will continue for the next three months and that the group is again monitoring prime-time programs during this month's ratings sweeps and will subsequently organize a new boycott "of one or more of the leading sponsors of sex, violence, profanity and anti-Christian bigotry."

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