Oil, fast food and even tobacco do not hold candles to big pharma when it comes to the number of battles being waged on a multitude of fiscal, ethical and regulatory fronts. It is therefore especially noteworthy to read today that Bristol-Myers Squibb, no stranger to crisis control (which drug company is?), plans to voluntarily forego all director-to-consumer advertising during the first year of a new drug’s release.

This is a bold move by a major player, and will no doubt be viewed by the industry’s chorus of detractors as a PR ploy to soften industry criticism. Frankly, I think it’s smart. The industry would prefer to self-regulate how it markets its products than have the terms and conditions be dictated by the government. A win-win. Now let’s see what Michael Moore’s (suddenly under-the-radar or tabled?) next project “Sicko” will have to say.