ETS Project

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This article is part of the Tobacco portal on Sourcewatch funded from 2006 - 2009 by the American Legacy Foundation.

The INFOTAB ETS Project was a plan developed in March 1987 for the global tobacco industry with the help of the PR firm Daniel J. Edelman Ltd. (now known as Daniel J. Edelman, Inc.) in the United Kingdom. According to report produced by Edelman describing the plan, the campaign was designed to

-maintain doubt on the scientific front [about the health hazards posed by secondhand tobacco smoke]

-position ETS as one of many atmospheric contaminants
-position anti-smokers as a vocal, unrepresentative minority

-promote tolerance, consideration as preferable to [tobacco control] regulation.[1]

Targeted audiences included the general public, individuals opinion-leaders, the media, national and local government and politicians, businesses, trade unions and special interest groups.

Edelman's report recognized that public health advocacy threatened the tobacco industry, saying,

"The anti-smoking industry has developed the ETS issue into a major threat. The tobacco industry has so far failed to match that threat with an equally strong communication of alternative points of view. There can be no doubt that our industry urgently needs to respond to this threat in more effective ways. We have so far failed to mount a co-ordinated international campaign... However, the anti-smoking industry will, as previous experience has shown, certainly attempt to make ETS an important issue in all areas and Infotab has recognised that a co-ordinated rdinated, international action plan must be produced as a matter of the first priority."[1]

Edelman's aim was to "help create an international counter the international activities of the anti-smoking industry."[1] The campaign utilized coordinated spokespeople

The INFOTAB ETS Plan related the belief that health advocates were being over-emotional in their assertion that secondhand smoke harms children's health. Edelman planned for preparatory work to be done in countries around the world to "forestall as far as possible the general public acceptance" of medical and scientific opinion that secondhand smoke is harmful to health.[1]

Sourcewatch resources

External resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 D.J. Edelman INFOTAB ETS Project The Overall Plan Report. March 12, 1987. 14 pp. Tobacco Institute Bates No. TI04772315/2328

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