Nike Files Supreme Court Brief

Nike has asked the US Supreme Court to review a California Supreme Court ruling that Nike's public statements on the work conditions of its overseas factories be considered commercial speech and be subject to truth-in-advertising laws. Nike argues that the ruling is "profoundly destructive of free speech." The ruling applies to statements made by Nike in op-eds, letters to the editor, and comments made to reporters. PR trade publication The Holmes Report wrote that as a result of the ruling, Nike would not be releasing its annual corporate responsibility report. A number of PR trade organizations have joined together to file a friend-of-the-court brief. "At stake is our ability to do the kind of work we do in regard to public debate," Council of PR Firms president Kathy Cripps said. "If the US Supreme Court does not hear this case, a lot of what we do will be considered commercial speech. This is possibly the most vital issue the industry is dealing with, and we need to come together to defend our position."