Cross Media Sees Progress in FTC Lawsuit Negotiations

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Multichannel marketing firm Cross Media Marketing Corp. said yesterday it had made progress toward an out-of-court settlement with the Federal Trade Commission on a lawsuit charging the company with improprieties in its magazine marketing programs.

The U.S. Department of Justice, representing the FTC in U.S. District Court in Atlanta, filed a motion earlier this month delaying an injunction hearing that had been scheduled for yesterday, according to documents released by Cross Media. In the court documents, the Justice attorney representing the FTC stated that "significant progress" toward a settlement had been made in a July 12 meeting with Cross Media.

"Although several issues must still be resolved, the plaintiff agrees that the parties have made progress and is amenable to postponing the hearing," the Justice attorney said in the documents.

According to the FTC suit filed in April, Cross Media made misrepresentations and failed to give adequate disclosures in its magazine telemarketing campaigns, to honor cancellation and refund requests and to monitor sales agents. Cross Media broke an agreement with the FTC made by Direct Sales International, which Cross Media acquired in January 2000 and turned into its magazine subscription unit, Media Outsourcing Inc., the FTC said.

Cross Media also operates LifeMinders, a company that sends e-mail reminders and content to people based on their personal preferences.

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