FTC Changes Affect Testimonial Advertisements, Bloggers, Celebrity Endorsements : RushPRNews - Newswire & Global Press Release Distribution

Bookmark and Share

FTC Changes Affect Testimonial Advertisements, Bloggers, Celebrity Endorsements

June 17, 2010

FTC Changes Affect Testimonial Advertisements, Bloggers, Celebrity Endorsements

WASHINGTON (RPRN) 06/17/10 — FTC Publishes Final Guides Governing Endorsements, Testimonials

The Federal Trade Commission today announced that it has approved final revisions to the guidance it gives to advertisers on how to keep their endorsement and testimonial ads in line with the FTC Act.

The notice incorporates several changes to the FTC’s Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising, which address endorsements by consumers, experts, organizations, and celebrities, as well as the disclosure of important connections between advertisers and endorsers. The Guides were last updated in 1980.

Under the revised Guides, advertisements that feature a consumer and convey his or her experience with a product or service as typical when that is not the case will be required to clearly disclose the results that consumers can generally expect. In contrast to the 1980 version of the Guides – which allowed advertisers to describe unusual results in a testimonial as long as they included a disclaimer such as “results not typical” – the revised Guides no longer contain this safe harbor.

The revised Guides also add new examples to illustrate the long standing principle that “material connections” (sometimes payments or free products) between advertisers and endorsers – connections that consumers would not expect – must be disclosed. These examples address what constitutes an endorsement when the message is conveyed by bloggers or other “word-of-mouth” marketers. The revised Guides specify that while decisions will be reached on a case-by-case basis, the post of a blogger who receives cash or in-kind payment to review a product is considered an endorsement. Thus, bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service. Likewise, if a company refers in an advertisement to the findings of a research organization that conducted research sponsored by the company, the advertisement must disclose the connection between the advertiser and the research organization. And a paid endorsement – like any other advertisement – is deceptive if it makes false or misleading claims.

Celebrity endorsers also are addressed in the revised Guides. While the 1980 Guides did not explicitly state that endorsers as well as advertisers could be liable under the FTC Act for statements they make in an endorsement, the revised Guides reflect Commission case law and clearly state that both advertisers and endorsers may be liable for false or unsubstantiated claims made in an endorsement – or for failure to disclose material connections between the advertiser and endorsers. The revised Guides also make it clear that celebrities have a duty to disclose their relationships with advertisers when making endorsements outside the context of traditional ads, such as on talk shows or in social media.

The Guides are administrative interpretations of the law intended to help advertisers comply with the Federal Trade Commission Act; they are not binding law themselves. In any law enforcement action challenging the allegedly deceptive use of testimonials or endorsements, the Commission would have the burden of proving that the challenged conduct violates the FTC Act.

The Commission vote approving issuance of the Federal Register notice detailing the changes was 4-0. The notice will be published in the Federal Register shortly, and is available now on the FTC’s Web site as a link to this press release. Copies also are available from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20580.

The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC’s online Complaint Assistant or 1-877-FTC-HELP 

1-877-382-4357. The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,700 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s Web site provides free information on a variety of consumer topics.

Media Web Address: http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/10/endortest.shtm
Main image credits: wikipedia
About the author:

RushPR News is a social media newswire service created to help you with content creation and distribution to news outlets and social media networks. RushPRnews can also assist you with your web strategies with experts advices and strategies at an affordable cost. Write us at news@rushprnews.com

Click here to see all news from this author/company

Filed Under: BANKING AND FINANCIAL NEWS, BREAKING NEWS, New Media - WEB 2.0, Social Media, PRESS RELEASE, U.S.A. Government

RUSH PR NEWS newswire and press release services at rushprnews.com / Anne Howard annehowardpublicist.com

Content- Legal Responsibility - All material is copyrighted - You may repost but you MUST link back to the original post on your page and acknowledge Rush PR News as the news source. Rush PR News is not legally and/or morally responsible for content of press releases, opinions expressed or fact-checking.

Rush PR News cannot be held legally responsible for material published and distributed through its newswire service or published in its press-room and therefore cannot be sued for published material. Third-party must be contacted directly to dispute content.

Rush PR News is not the contact for material published.


Fuzion International Launches Menswear Collection in San Francisco for the Elevated Spirit

SAN FRANCISCO 11/27/15 · — Fuzion International, a San Francisco-based elevated “lifestyle...

BLACK FRIDAY SALE: PR Coupon available! Valid 4 days only!

San Francisco 11/27/15 · BLACK FRIDAY PR valid until Tuesday, December 5...

Fuzion International thrilled to be a part of CFC 1

SAN FRANCISCO 11/25/15 · What an awesome fighting event. Fuzion International, a San...

The African-American Dating Experience

Austin, TX 11/24/15 · New book Chronicles The African American Dating Experience…And...

The eWheel Adventure Begins! Self Balancing Scooter Market Explodes

ATLANTA, GA 11/15/15 · From the Hover-board to the eWheel the self-balancing...

GreenRoad Releases Next Generation of its Mobile Application

Austin, TX 11/11/15 · GreenRoad Releases the Next Generation of its Mobile...

Fuzion International Coming to San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO 11/10/15 · Come and meet lifestyle brand designer Lucas Molo...

Popular New Service Enables Customers to Order a Christmas Tree Online

New Brunswick, Canada 11/10/15 · The pace of modern living means we don't...

Hilltop Christmas Tree Farms Launches Modern Delivery Service

New Brunswick, MA 11/07/15 · Hilltop Christmas Tree Farms has launched a new...

New Service Delivers Fresh Christmas Trees to Hot Texas Homes

TEXAS 11/06/15 · It’s not always easy to fill a home...

Georgia Rapper Young Kuntry Release New Video/Single/LP

Atlanta, Ga 11/06/15 · Young Kuntry, one of Georgia most popular upcoming...

Digital Traffic Systems Awarded Contract in Ohio for Road Weather Information Systems (RWIS) Maintenance

RICHMOND, VA 11/04/15 · Digital Traffic Systems, Inc. (www.digitaltrafficsystems.com)(DTS) has been awarded...

Welcome to the World’s most Supercharged Messenger Bag for Commuters

London, UK 11/03/15 · The ability to charge a smartphone or iPad...

SEC Adopts Rules to Permit Crowdfunding

Washington D.C 10/30/15 · Proposes Amendments to Existing Rules to Facilitate Intrastate...