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Old 10-07-2009, 10:08 AM   #1
Mabus
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New FTC Guidelines (10/2009)

FTC Publishes Final Guides Governing Endorsements, Testimonials

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Quote:
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.
Makes me wonder if people that receive any compensation from commercial games for their online advertising are now subject to these rules.

As an example, let's look at Evony (a graphical browser-based game). They offer "incentives" for posting and blogging about their game. These incentives are items meant to enhance various in-game conditions, and usually these items cost real-world money.

Just thought to bring it up, as I found it interesting.
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Old 10-07-2009, 10:47 AM   #2
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Re: New FTC Guidelines (10/2009)

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Originally Posted by Mabus View Post
As an example, let's look at Evony (a graphical browser-based game). They offer "incentives" for posting and blogging about their game. These incentives are items meant to enhance various in-game conditions, and usually these items cost real-world money.

Just thought to bring it up, as I found it interesting.
Also interesting is all those Facebook games that offer some kind of in-game incentive to allow them to publish to your profile. Maybe this is different because adding any message of your own is optional and I guess you could even write "This game sucks!" in the text and still get the bonus - their code would have published to your wall and that's that.

There's virtual currency on all kinds of sites used as incentives, not just games, so it will be interesting to see where the line gets drawn on this.

I do agree with the basic premise though - if I write a glowing review of Photoshop CS4 - readers should know if I am writing it because Adobe paid me to or because I like Photoshop CS4. Even that gets blurry, what if Adobe didn't pay me to write the review, but my glowing review includes an affiliate link to buy the product.
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Old 10-14-2009, 07:15 PM   #3
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Re: New FTC Guidelines (10/2009)

This mostly hits blogs.

Print publications are actually exempted from this. Lame.
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Old 11-19-2009, 12:19 PM   #4
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Re: New FTC Guidelines (10/2009)

This is a positive step for blogs and social media, as it validates the market, but I do not see it affecting MMOs or MUDs.
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