FTC Disclaimers for Sponsored Youtube Videos

Hi guys – 

After our discussion in class today, I was reading about sponsored Youtube videos and the legislation passed to combat the unethical nature of these videos. In the past few years, there has been a series of people who have “promoted” products, specifically in the beauty/cosmetic industry, to vulnerable viewers who are watching the videos to pick up tricks, believing those making the videos are “gurus” or experts in the field. However, in many cases, the people in the video were promoting a product because it was given to them for free or because a company paid them to promote said product. To combat this, there was legislation passed by the Federal Trade Commission, requiring producers of these videos to provide “FTC disclaimers” in the “about” section of the video, letting viewers know that products were either received free of charge or that a company was financially sponsoring the video. Do you all think this is a good method to combat this issue? Do you think there are ways for this issue to continue happening? How easy do you think it is to regulate usage of these FTC disclaimers? 

 

Read more about the legislation here: http://www.ftc.gov/foia/disclaimer.shtm

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One Response to FTC Disclaimers for Sponsored Youtube Videos

  1. As we discussed in class, these disclaimers can backfire, since people just don’t correct appropriately for the conflict on interest, and the disclosure can make the claims even more extreme. That said, it is not clear what the right policy to deal with this should be.

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