Smokey Bear is a fictional character of the longest running public service campaign in United States history. The character's mission is to raise public awareness to protect America's forests. Since its inception, Smokey's forest fire prevention campaign has reduced the area lost annually from 22 million to 4 million acres (89,000 to 16,000 km²).

Smokey's message "Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires" was created in 1944 by the Ad Council. In a recent study, 95% of those surveyed could finish the sentence when given the first words. In April 2001, Smokey's saying was updated to "Only You Can Prevent Wildfires."

Smokey's correct full name is Smokey Bear. In 1952, songwriters Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins had a hit with "Smokey The Bear". The pair said that "the" was added to Smokey’s name to keep the song's rhythm. This small change has caused confusion among Smokey fans ever since.

The fictional character Smokey Bear is administered by three entities: the United States Forest Service, the National Association of State Foresters, and the Ad Council. Smokey Bear's name and image are protected by U.S. federal law, the Smokey Bear Act of 1952 (16 U.S.C. 580 (p-2); 18 U.S.C. 711) granting protection that supersedes the limited authorities of both a trademark and a copyright.

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