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July 1, 1916


JAMA. 1916;LXVII(1):37. doi:10.1001/jama.1916.02590010041016

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The Supreme Court of the United States has recently handed down a decision that is of more than ordinary significance to those who are interested in truth and decency in advertising. In effect, the court has held that an advertiser may be guilty of fraud if, through misrepresentation, he leads a purchaser to invest in his goods, even though the goods advertised are worth the money asked for them. A real-estate company had used the United States mails to advertise some Florida land for sale. The company was indicted for using the mails to defraud on the ground that false representations had been made concerning the land. It was not denied, in the indictment, "that the land was worth fully as much as was to be obtained therefor." The lower court, before which the case was tried, held that the business was legitimate on the ground that it was not

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