Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 82

Thread: FTC to Regulate Blogging

  1. #1
    Melissa's Avatar
    Melissa is offline Newbie Net Builder
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    69
    Thanks
    6
    Thanked 46 Times in 30 Posts

    FTC to Regulate Blogging

    More government stupidity:


    FTC to Regulate Blogging

    Monday , October 05, 2009

    The Federal Trade Commission will try to regulate blogging for the first time, requiring writers on the Web to clearly disclose any freebies or payments they get from companies for reviewing their products.

    The FTC said Monday its commissioners voted 4-0 to approve the final Web guidelines, which had been expected. Violating the rules, which take effect Dec. 1, could bring fines up to $11,000 per violation. Bloggers or advertisers also could face injunctions and be ordered to reimburse consumers for financial losses stemming from inappropriate product reviews.

    The commission stopped short of specifying how bloggers must disclose conflicts of interest. Rich Cleland, assistant director of the FTC's advertising practices division, said the disclosure must be "clear and conspicuous," no matter what form it will take.

    Bloggers have long praised or panned products and services online. But what some consumers might not know is that many companies pay reviewers for their write-ups or give them free products such as toys or computers or trips to Disneyland. In contrast, at traditional journalism outlets, products borrowed for reviews generally have to be returned.

    Before the FTC gave notice last November it was going to regulate such endorsements, blogs varied in the level of disclosures about these potential conflicts of interest.

    The FTC's proposal made many bloggers anxious. They said the scrutiny would make them nervous about posting even innocent comments.

    To placate such fears, Cleland said the FTC will more likely go after an advertiser instead of a blogger for violations. The exception would be a blogger who runs a "substantial" operation that violates FTC rules and already received a warning, he said.

    Existing FTC rules already banned deceptive and unfair business practices. The final guidelines aim to clarify the law for the vast world of blogging. Not since 1980 had the commission revised its guidelines on endorsements and testimonials.

    Cleland said a blogger who receives a freebie without the advertiser knowing would not violate FTC guidelines. For example, someone who gets a free bag of dog food as part of a promotion from a pet shop wouldn't violate FTC guidelines if he writes about the product on his blog.

    Blogger Linsey Krolik said she's always disclosed any freebies she's received on products she writes about, but has stepped up her efforts since last fall. She said she adds a notice at the end of a post, "very clear in italics or bold or something — this is the deal. It's not kind of buried."

  2. Thanked by:

    DotComBum (3 November, 2009)

  3. #2
    MeetHere's Avatar
    MeetHere is offline Newbie Net Builder
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    430
    Blog Entries
    1
    Thanks
    66
    Thanked 27 Times in 24 Posts
    is this rule applicable internationally?

    yeh, very bad

  4. #3
    Kovich's Avatar
    Kovich is offline Community Guardian
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,797
    Blog Entries
    30
    Thanks
    453
    Thanked 420 Times in 279 Posts
    The FTC isn't an international governing body, MeetHere.

    Violating the rules, which take effect Dec. 1, could bring fines up to $11,000 per violation. Bloggers or advertisers also could face injunctions and be ordered to reimburse consumers for financial losses stemming from inappropriate product reviews.
    You know what? I'll take my chances. I am seriously getting tired of these continuous attempts by not only the U.S. Government, but many other governments as well, to place restrictions on the internet, internet content and internet activity. It's not gonna fly, pal. I'm not giving in. Bodies like the FTC and FCC continue to make rage flow through my veins.

    Funny enough, the governments of the world don't seem to understand that it is impossible to regulate the internet. They don't seem to realize that they are outnumbered and that we simply will not submit to their ridiculous demands. I'm a very patriotic person and I support my government - but not when it comes to things like this. These attempts need to end.

    Countries like North Korea, China and Iran heavily suppress internet activity. Things like that are the worst sort of regulations. They need to get with the program. It's sickening to see more intellectual and developed nations taking steps backwards by trying to bombard website and blog owners with legalities, restrictions, penalties, etc. Pay taxes on this, disclose this, put a disclaimer here, write a publicly accessible policy regarding this and that, don't mention this topic, that one, or this other one, pay fees on this, etc. Seriously, come on now.

  5. Thanked by:

    Loko (6 October, 2009)

  6. #4
    Will.Spencer's Avatar
    Will.Spencer is offline Retired
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    5,033
    Blog Entries
    1
    Thanks
    1,010
    Thanked 2,327 Times in 1,258 Posts
    The Internet sees regulation as damage and routes around it.
    Submit Your Webmaster Related Sites to the NB Directory
    I swear, by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.

  7. #5
    Keldorn's Avatar
    Keldorn is offline Net Builder
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    400
    Thanks
    21
    Thanked 60 Times in 52 Posts
    That link doesn't appear valid.

    Code:
    http://www.netbuilders.org/true
    Submit new proxies -

  8. #6
    Loko's Avatar
    Loko is offline Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Europe
    Posts
    964
    Thanks
    351
    Thanked 347 Times in 241 Posts
    Here's the dreaded document

    While I wouldn't mind some kind of 'site certification' on a voluntary basis and from a non-governmental body like a consumers organisation, I fully agree with Kovich.
    Governmental regulation is going too far in this case and puts U.S. bloggers in a disadvantage.
    Last edited by Loko; 6 October, 2009 at 13:25 PM. Reason: typo

  9. #7
    DotComBum's Avatar
    DotComBum is offline Experienced Net Builder
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    www.TheIMForum.com
    Posts
    964
    Blog Entries
    12
    Thanks
    126
    Thanked 196 Times in 154 Posts
    So how they're going to enforce it? Are they going to check on every blog for violations?

  10. #8
    TopDogger's Avatar
    TopDogger is offline Über Hund
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Hellfire, AZ
    Posts
    2,946
    Thanks
    341
    Thanked 883 Times in 671 Posts
    Here is the link to the FTC summary page.

    Depending upon how far they want to go with this, it could potentially affect every blog or product review site within the USA jurisdiction. I have an affiliate site that does product reviews. I already have text on the privacy policy page that states that it is an affiliate site.

    After scanning the documents, the key to this appears to be to disclose any "material connections", which probably includes affiliate commissions. Also, you need to make it clear that you do not endorse any product that you review. I'm not an attorney, but a couple of simple sentences on a privacy policy or terms of use page should cover it.

    It is curious that the Obama government wants to start cracking down on the Internet, but doesn't do much about the phony endorsements by celebrities in TV infomercials.

    Quote Originally Posted by DotComBum View Post
    So how they're going to enforce it? Are they going to check on every blog for violations?

    They will probably target a couple of large bloggers or product review sites that are taking payoffs for favorable product endorsements. I think a lot of the larger sites do receive free products to review. I do not see that as being a bad thing as long as the reviews are fair. But when a site gets thousands of dollars to write a favorable product review, that crosses a line. They cannot go after every site, but they can scare a lot of bloggers if they successfully prosecute a few of the big ones.

    They really should start regulating all of the lies and deceptive information we get from politicians.
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote." -- Benjamin Franklin


  11. #9
    elbandelero's Avatar
    elbandelero is offline Net Builder
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    544
    Thanks
    209
    Thanked 105 Times in 79 Posts
    Good grief, sometimes I just wish the dinosaurs who don't understand the Internet would collectively disappear in some kind of mass extinction and let those of us who really appreciate modern technology get on with life. I can't wait for the day we can wear the Internet on our clothes, or in our skulls.

  12. Thanked by:

    Keldorn (6 October, 2009), Kovich (6 October, 2009)

  13. #10
    Keldorn's Avatar
    Keldorn is offline Net Builder
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    400
    Thanks
    21
    Thanked 60 Times in 52 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by elbandelero View Post
    Good grief, sometimes I just wish the dinosaurs who don't understand the Internet would collectively disappear in some kind of mass extinction and let those of us who really appreciate modern technology get on with life. I can't wait for the day we can wear the Internet on our clothes, or in our skulls.
    Well said. The last thing the internet needs is red tape on by bureaucrats who dont understand with what their meddling with.
    Submit new proxies -

Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. The Blogging Project
    By Aquarezz in forum Blogging
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 30 September, 2009, 18:32 PM
  2. Blogging Kid
    By harish in forum Site Reviews
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 11 July, 2009, 18:02 PM
  3. Need Blogging Advise
    By Mac in forum Blogging
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 2 June, 2009, 02:32 AM
  4. Future Of Blogging?
    By lethalboom in forum Blogging
    Replies: 21
    Last Post: 21 May, 2009, 08:26 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •