The Federal Trade Commission has revised its guidelines governing endorsements in the age of blogging and the rise of celebrities on Twitter. This was the first time the FTC guidelines have been overhauled since 1980. Specifically, the rules now require experts, organizations, celebrities and just about anyone else who gets compensated for promoting a product or service online to disclose the kinds of results average consumers can expect to find. Simply put, anyone who gets paid by a marketer and blogs about their product is considered an endorser by the FTC. Violators face an $11,000 fine per infraction, AdAge reports.
Previously, when someone notable spoke about their experience with a product or service, the ad only had to carry the tag “results not typical.” But the changes in “word of mouth” marketing over the past 30 years — and the more recent questions about blogola and hidden payments to blogger-endorsers — have spurred the FTC to act now. Release