The FTC has finally updated a long-overdue guide on endorsements and testimonials to address changes in technology and advertising mediums. The new rules are designed to bring greater truth and disclosure to blogs, TV ads relying on testimonials and social media. The updated guide has garnered the most press for its ruling that bloggers can be fined up to $11,000 if they don't disclose that they got cash or products for posting a testimonial. While most bloggers and respected word-of-mouth marketing firms have required this disclosure, the ruling and its large penalty should help consumers trust online reviews.
Disclaimer, I have not been paid to talk about Granite City Food and Brewery, I like their beer :o)
The FTC is also putting more stringent guidelines in place for celebrity endorsements via twits and such, and for products that showcase extreme results in weight loss and such - some truth in advertising versus just an asterisk that states "results are not typical". Click on over to WalletPop for the full entry.