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Since 1997, Dr. Arnett has served as an expert witness in over 20 cases brought against the major tobacco companies, including the multi-state attorneys general case that resulted in the largest civil settlement in legal history in 1998. In these cases, a key issue has been the question of whether the tobacco companies have targeted minors in their advertising. Based on his review of confidential tobacco industry documents, his research on adolescents' responses to cigarette ads, and his understanding of development during adolescence, Dr. Arnett has testified that the tobacco companies have consistently targeted minors in their advertising over at least the past 40 years. The documents show that the companies have long realized that virtually all smokers begin as minors (usually around age 14) and that brand loyalty is strong and enduring once established. For these reasons, the companies have concluded that the key to greater profits is to be successful in attracting minors to smoke their brands. The Joe Camel campaign of 1988-1997 was perhaps the most egregious example of this strategy, but it has also been present in many other tobacco ad campaigns for brands such as Newport, Winston, Virginia Slims, and Marlboro. The tobacco companies target minors for a simple reason: That’s where the money is.

Depositions and Testimony in Tobacco Litigation

Date Case Depo/Testimony
April 1, 1997 State of Florida deposition
May 1, 1997 Broin deposition
July 8, 1997 Engle deposition
August 25, 1997 State of Texas deposition
September 23, 1997 State of Texas deposition
April 22, 1998 States of AZ & WA deposition
June 23, 1998 State of Oklahoma deposition
September 22, 1998 State of Oklahoma deposition
October 16, 1998 State of Massachusetts deposition
November 19, 1998 State of Washington deposition
December 3, 1998 Engle deposition
December 14, 1998 Engle deposition
December 15, 1998 Engle deposition
December 30, 1998 Ohio Unions deposition
February 24, 1999 Ohio Unions deposition
December 2, 1999 Nat'l Asbestos Workers deposition
August 17, 2000 Allen Davis deposition
August 18, 2000 Sue Ann Mann deposition
November 17, 2000 Scott deposition
April 23-24, 2002 Simms deposition
December 17-18, 2002 Brown deposition
March 12-13, 2003 Scott testimony
September 2, 2003 St. Louis deposition
August 24, 2006 Leroy Williams deposition
March 1, 2007 Jack Frost deposition
August 19, 2009 West Virginia deposition
January 14-15, 2010 Missouri Hospitals deposition
January 26, 2011 California Tobacco Litigation deposition

Articles on Tobacco Issues

Health Education & Behavior, 2006

The myth of peer influence in adolescent smoking initiation. Download this article (pdf).

Journal of Health Communication, 2005

Talk is cheap: The tobacco companies' violations of their own Cigarette Advertising Code.  Download this article (pdf).

Journal of Research on Adolescence, 2001

Adolescents’ responses to cigarette advertisements for five “youth brands” and one “adult brand.” Download this article (pdf).

Addictive Behaviors, 2000

Optimistic bias in adolescent and adultsmokers and nonsmokers. Download this article (pdf).

Public Health Reports, 1999

Winston’s new “No Additives” campaign:Straight up? No bull?

University of Toledo Law Review, 1999

Adolescents and the proposed tobacco settlement. Download this article (pdf).

Tobacco Control, 1998

(with George Terhanian)

Adolescents' responses to cigarette advertising: Exposure, liking, and the appeal of smoking. Download this article (pdf).