Noticed lately the diminishing number of celebrities endorsing health products, anti-aging remedies and cosmetics? The first inkling is to blame it on the recession and the lack of sponsorship funding, but there is more to it than that..
That’s because celebrities now face a crackdown with new rules on product endorsement. The US Federal Trade Commission last week released new regulations that say that anyone who endorses a product, whether celebrities or bloggers, must make explicit the compensation received from companies. Not only that, celebrities who endorse their services will be liable for any untruthful statements made about products as part of a crackdown by US regulators on a wide range of deceptive marketing practices.
These regulations are aimed more specifically at the new social media advertising, aka blogs,twitters and the like. This will mean that if a blogger receives a free sample of skin cream and untruthfully claims it cures eczema, for example, the company and the blogger could be sued for false advertising.
These steps address widespread concerns that with the new media, untruthful and exaggerated claims have been made on products, capitalising on the lag in appropriate regulations to cover the new social media platforms .
Not all the undoing can be blamed on the new media. The celebrities sometimes commit a faux pas – ask Sharon Stone.
Personally, I feel the area where regulators will be quite busy with will be in anti-aging treatment. From Dr Murad’s line of balms and creams to Cover Girl’s Simply Ageless line, there has been a surfeit of celebrities willing to endorse them. Now they will have to be accountable if someone claims that the treatment does not make them look like a celebrity!
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