Canadian Food Inspection Agency: “includes any legend, word or mark attached to, included in, belonging to or accompanying any food, drug, cosmetic, device or package.”  See also Food and Drugs Act.


Foulidis v. Ford, 2012 ONSC: “The plaintiff must prove four things on the balance of probability to prove a libel in this case: (1) that the defendant spoke the words in issue; (2) that the defendant published the words in issue to one or more third parties; (3) that the words in issue referred to the plaintiff; (4) that the words in issue were defamatory of the plaintiff.”

Canadian Bar Association, “Defamation: Libel and Slander” (online):  “Libel is the type of defamation with a permanent record, like a newspaper, a letter, a website posting, an email, a picture, or a radio or TV broadcast.  If you can prove that someone libeled you, and that person does not have a good defence … then a court will presume that you suffered damages and award you money to pay for your damaged reputation.  But going to Supreme Court is expensive and even if you win, you may not get as much as it costs you to sue.  In deciding on damages, the Court will consider your position in the community.  For example, if you are a professional, damages may be higher.”

Lift letter.

R. v. David Stucky, 2006 CanLII 41523 (Ont. S.C.): “A lift letter is a promotional technique, routinely used in direct mail promotions, urging further consideration of the initial offer before its expiration.”


A type of spam.  Facebook, “News Feed FYI: Cleaning Up News Feed Spam” (April 10, 2014): “’Like-baiting’ is when a post explicitly asks News Feed readers to like, comment or share the post in order to get additional distribution beyond what the post would normally receive.”

Literal meaning.

Generally speaking, advertising or marketing in Canada can be misleading under federal (e.g., the federal Competition Act) or provincial (e.g., consumer protection legislation) where a representation or advertising claim is either literally false or misleading (the latter which may take into consideration the “general impression” of an advertising claim).  With respect to the literal meaning of an advertising claim, the Supreme Court has held:  “The phrase ‘literal meaning of the terms used therein’ [for the purposes of the Quebec Consumer Protection Act] does not raise any interpretation problems.  It simply means that every word used in a representation must be interpreted in its ordinary sense” (Richard v. Time Inc., 2012 SCC 8).



I help clients practically navigate Canada’s advertising and marketing laws and offer Canadian advertising law services in relation to print, online, new media, social media and e-mail marketing.

My Canadian advertising law services include advice in relation to: anti-spam legislation (CASL); Competition Bureau complaints; the general misleading advertising provisions of the Competition Act; Internet, new media and social media advertising and marketing; promotional contests (sweepstakes); and sales and promotions. I also provide advice relating to specific types of advertising issues, including performance claims, testimonials, disclaimers and native advertising.

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