FTC Will Monitor Paid Celebrity Social Media Posts Closely
The Federal Trade Commission wants stars and advertisers to be upfront about sponsored content.
The FTC wants to crack down on celebrities posting sponsored content and brands not sharing that the stars have been paid. For instance, when DJ Khaled posts a Snapchat with Ciroc featured, Kim Kardashian posts about a certain waist trainer, or Amber Rose posts an Instagram about a certain tea detox, the advertisers need to make certain it is clear the post is an advertisement, according to a Bloomberg report.
“We’ve been interested in deceptive endorsements for decades and this is a new way in which they are appearing,” Michael Ostheimer, a deputy in the FTC’s Ad Practices Division told Bloomberg. “We believe consumers put stock in endorsements and we want to make sure they are not being deceived.”
Consumers still need to read the words in a post to gleam an ad when coming form a personal account. The FTC is fine with a post starting with the hashtag #ad but not ones that begin with #sp or #spon. This has proven confusing for influencers and advertises, according to Stefania Pomponi, the founder of Clever Girls Collective Inc., to Bloomberg.
"We're venturing into a little bit of ridiculous territory with the FTC saying these things because influencers really want to follow the rules," Pomponi said. "They want to do a good job -- they want to be seen as useful to brands and don't want to do anything that would jeopardize their relationships.''