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UPDATED: Thank You John Oliver: Johnson & Johnson Advertising Budget Infographic vs. Federal Fines

UPDATED: Thank You John Oliver: Johnson & Johnson Advertising Budget Infographic vs. Federal Fines

UPDATED: February 11, 2015

Thank you John Oliver!

Everyone, including my mother asked if I’ve seen the amazing John Oliver in his latest takedown on HBO’s Last Week Tonight: Marketing to Doctors.  I just did-but sadly I didn’t need to as I lived it for 15 years and have been writing about it on this site for over a year.  If you haven’t seen his cunning, hilarious and accurate take on the industry take a few minutes:

June 15, 2014

It’s challenging when we read or hear about a company that was fined billions by The Department of Justice to understand just what that means in relations to a penalty to the company.  Last year Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmacetucials was fined $2.2 billion for off-label marketing and kickbacks by The Department of Justice.

Johnson & Johson Advertising Infographic*Sources: (2006 & 2007) (2010) (2011) (2013)

Johnson & Johnson in 2013 introduced its first corporate-branding campaign in a decade at its annual shareholder meeting in New Brunswick, NJ. The TV ads began airing on May 6, 2013 along with print ad costing an estimated $20-$30 to run through the remainder of last year.  For All You Love

Interesting timing since it was around Mother’s Day and the same year Johnson & Johson’s Janssen Pharmaceutical’s was fined the $2.2 billion for the drug Risperdal- 31 children died, over 1,200 children were seriously injured and young males grew breasts.  I personally would put the timing of the ad in the category of manipulative and not recognizing the rights of others from The Sociopathic Business Model™ but again up to each person reading to make decisions based off the facts and apply to their own lives.

Johnson & Johnson Advertising Budget Breakdown

In 2010, Johnson & Johnson spent $805 Million on television and another $837 Million on “Other.”   Does this much money spent in ad sales correlate to why we do not see news stories on the over 44,000 women suffering from medical mesh (over 22,000 are attributed to Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon’s Gynecare?)

Above we read that Johnson & Johnson was fined for kickbacks, does that fall into the “Other” category?  Are companies now building in illegal activity and  the cost of large federal fines into their annual budgets?  What will it take for government to see that billion fines are doing nothing to deter the illegal and deadly behavior?  And what will it take for the media to report without bias?

FIFA’s 2014 World Cup’s major partners, which reportedly pay some $25-50 million per year and Johnson & Johnson is listed as a sponsor. (2014)*  Mesh victim Linda Batiste v. Ethicon was awarded $1.2 million in comparison; and there are at least another 22,000 women behind her waiting for their day in court.  Personally, I’d rather see Johnson & Johnson held accountable for their mesh cases before they are allowed to put another dime into advertising dollars.

FIFA World Cup Sponsor Johnson & Johnson



  • It’s no wonder there is so much corruption at the FDA. They are dealing with criminal corporations every single day.

    February 11, 2015 at 2:24 pm
  • I watched the whole thing. Stunning. I knew it all from reading and from my own personal bad experience but for someone to actually put it all into one video that anyone interested in knowing would understand was truly great. Thanks Melayna!

    February 11, 2015 at 2:26 pm
  • Linwood Staub

    Interesting…..and served with good humor. At least I have the choice whether or not to fill a prescription, politicians make our laws and are held to a lower standard than a general practitioner. Sadly, I can’t choose not to follow bad laws. Can you possibly put similar piece together on politicians and lobbyist? Bet they get a few free dinners!

    February 19, 2015 at 8:06 am

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