New FTC Disclosure Rules?

Nov 27, 2019

Our first minisode of Season 3 of “The Creative Influencer” podcast is available for download on iTunes, Spotify, and premier platforms everywhere.  In minisodes, we answer questions that our listeners have emailed Jon.  In this minisode, Jon discusses the new FTC document called “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers.”

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A transcript of the episode follows:

This is the first minisode of Season three. Today’s e-mail comes from Stella. It reads:

Hey Jon,
I heard that the FTC issued new rules for Influencers. There are already too many rules! Please help me out. Has anything changed? What do I need to know?
#thankyou
Stella

Stella, great question. I chose it because we are putting together updated Influencer Guides to act as cheat sheets for what you need to know and what you need to do. They will be posted to our web site in the next few weeks.

For background, in 2009 the FTC released a document called “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” This page turner was followed in 2017 by “The FTC’s Endorsement Guides: What People are asking.”

On November 5, the FTC released a document called “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers.”

Stella, to directly answer your question, the FTC’s Disclosures 101 hasn’t changed anything, but they’ve clarified several things.

I’ll hit on two of the biggest here and we’ll cover everything in the cheat sheets on pfeifferlaw.com.

The first big item to come from Disclosures 101 is that if you post from outside the US, say France or Italy or Australia, US law applies if its “reasonably foreseeable” that the post will affect US consumers. That’s a big deal. Brands can no longer skirt disclosure laws by hiring famous European soccer players to tout their products.

The second clarification is that tags, likes and pins are considered endorsements.

That’s just a broad overview of Disclosures 101. Stay tuned for a deeper dive on Pfeifferlaw.com and be sure to follow us on your social media platform of choice for updates.

Stella, thank you for your question.


The Creative Influencer is a weekly podcast where we discuss all things creative with an emphasis on Influencers. It is hosted by Jon Pfeiffer, an entertainment attorney in Santa Monica, California.  Jon interviews influencers, creatives and the professionals who work with them.

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