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60 Minutes Broadcast Unnecessarily Frightens Consumers

Post Date: March 9, 2014
By: Stephanie Miller

‘Data Broker’ Broadcast Ignores Tremendous Value of Data-Driven Marketing

New York, NY, March 9, 2014 — The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) strongly objects to the unbalanced, heavily negative depiction of the data-driven marketing industry in tonight’s episode of 60 Minutes. DMA renews its efforts on behalf and with the industry to better educate the media, policymakers, and consumers on the tremendous benefits that responsible marketers bring to the entire data-driven economy.

“DMA has managed our successful self-regulation program for more than four decades, and we will continue to fight on the side of consumer value, transparency in data collection and use, ethical and responsible marketing, and innovation,” said DMA President and CEO Linda Woolley.  “Our Ethical Business Guidelines are the backbone of the public trust between consumers and marketers and our consumer services like and provide consumers choice and clear notice about how marketing data is used for marketing purposes.  According to a recent Value of Data study developed by professors at Harvard Business School and Columbia University, data-driven marketing contributed $156 billion and 675,000 jobs to the 2012 United States economy, and none of its detractors, including 60 Minutes, can show any harm to consumers. In fact, consumers love what we do.”

DMA will be increasing its efforts to educate all audiences on the benefit of data-driven marketing.  The association asks every member to join in by increasing consumer-facing communications about how marketing data is used responsibly for marketing purposes.


About Direct Marketing Association (DMA)

The Direct Marketing Association ( is the world’s largest trade association dedicated to advancing and protecting responsible data-driven marketing.  Founded in 1917, DMA represents thousands of companies and nonprofit organizations that use and support data-driven marketing practices and techniques. DMA provides the Voice to shape policy and public opinion, the Connections to grow members’ businesses and the Tools to ensure full compliance with ethical and best practices as well as professional development. 

In 2012, the Data-Driven Marketing Economy (DDME) added $156 billion in revenue to the U.S. economy and fueled more than 675,000 jobs.  The real value of data is in its exchange across the DDME:  70 percent of the value of the DDME – $110 billion in revenue and 478,000 jobs – depends on the ability of firms to exchange data across the DDME.


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  1. John Mauldin says:

    Mainstream media is always biased. There is no more professional reporting. Writers don’t work. They just take what they hear and do no leg work validate the information before they report. Fundamentally, they are no more than parrots. Worthless! Additionally, the “blame game” is the newest way of life. Sad!

  2. rschroeder says:

    Not only was it an unbalanced report – the “investigative” reporters needed to do more homework….surely Steve Kroft and the other reporters signed up for the 60-Minutes show app on their computer or phone as part of their “investigation”? If so,(and had they read the CBS privacy policy), they’d have been alot more informed. And surely, they walked down the hall to the CBS Marketing Department to speak with them about CBS’ own data gathering practices? Don’t think so. And, for me – one of the most ironic moments of all came when I used the link to view the segment online and had to first watch a Google ad!

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