1. Soeasy's Avatar
    The agency says that when celebrity tweeters want to promote something, they have to follow some new guidelines -- or else.

    FTC places new rules on celebrity tweeters | Internet & Media - CNET News
    03-14-13 11:37 AM
  2. lorax1284's Avatar
    For jebus' sake, the US has got "celebrity tweets" under some kind of federal government watch, but you can buy semi-automatic weapons at 7-Eleven. Further proof that US culture has gone 'round the twist' as they say down under (I'm Canadian: just mixing it up a bit) :-
    03-14-13 11:47 AM
  3. geoffsdad's Avatar
    Less spam I guess, but it seems like the FTC should have more important things to do than monitor twitter. Seems petty, trivial and downright stupid. I wonder how this affects Alicia Keys and Blackberry
    ctuffy likes this.
    03-14-13 11:55 AM
  4. houshinto#IM's Avatar
    It's about controlling where the $ goes.

    Completely ridiculous but when you have dark $ fueling politics and regulation what do you expect?
    bunky1971, Dapper37 and Umedon like this.
    03-14-13 12:00 PM
  5. bunky1971's Avatar
    Bit by bit and inch by inch we are becoming the United Servants of America, Inc.
    ctuffy likes this.
    03-14-13 12:30 PM
  6. travaz's Avatar
    Welcome to the ERA of huge intrusive Govt!
    kbz1960 and JR A like this.
    03-14-13 02:59 PM
  7. JR A's Avatar
    For jebus' sake, the US has got "celebrity tweets" under some kind of federal government watch, but you can buy semi-automatic weapons at 7-Eleven. Further proof that US culture has gone 'round the twist' as they say down under (I'm Canadian: just mixing it up a bit) :-
    Which 7-Eleven's offer firearms? I'd LOVE to know

    Welcome to the ERA of huge intrusive Govt!
    Yup!

    This is the dumbest thing I've read today - regulating celebrity's tweets.

    For crying out loud, these are the same politicians who say I have to wait 10 days before buying another firearm, even though DOJ already checked my background the first time; or the ones who say I can't purchase a "hi-capacity" magazine that holds more than 10 rounds (even though they come from the manufacturer's factory STANDARD that way), yet my neighbor Joe Blow can just because he's a "law enforcement" officer, yeah, right... *sigh...
    FairlightRacing likes this.
    03-14-13 05:06 PM
  8. dbollman423's Avatar
    Sounds completely illegal. The Supreme Court ruled that commercial speech is protected. Otherwise, advertisement is considered "Fluff" in the law. The celebrity has the right to free speech also.

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9930 using Tapatalk
    rjkolo, Dapper37 and kbz1960 like this.
    03-16-13 10:04 PM
  9. Wiki Cydia's Avatar
    Sounds completely illegal.
    There are only a handful things (if any) that are "completely illegal." This isn't one of them.

    The Supreme Court ruled that commercial speech is protected.
    There are always exceptions. As an example, drug commercials are "commercial speech," yet drug companies are required to state drug side effects during their ads. If commercial speech were simply "protected," those companies could have had these rules overturned by now as violative of the First Amendment.

    Otherwise, advertisement is considered "Fluff" in the law.
    I think the word your looking for is "puffery," which has a very specific definition that refers to exaggerated, false claims. These proposed rules aren't about exaggerated or false claims as much as they are about calling an ad an ad.

    The celebrity has the right to free speech also.
    The "right to free speech" isn't absolute, and doesn't include the right to defraud the public. In theory, the FTC guidelines appear aimed at consumer protection here, specifically requiring tweets that are in fact ads to self-identify as ads.
    richardat and 00stryder like this.
    03-17-13 12:41 AM
  10. Dapper37's Avatar
    What's next, celebrities must be naked at all times. No free advertising for ANYTHING! I'm in
    03-17-13 07:48 AM
  11. Dapper37's Avatar
    Celebrities are no longer allowed to take pictures! They just can't handle that much power!
    03-17-13 07:49 AM
  12. Charles Martin1's Avatar
    Sadly, the USA is becoming more and more protectionist.
    03-17-13 08:01 AM
  13. kbz1960's Avatar
    I could give a rats A about what celebrities think but this is just another step.
    03-17-13 08:05 AM
  14. richardat's Avatar
    Thanks Wiki cydia....yes, I was going to say "freedom of speech" is an overused and very broad cry, which does not cover this. I am actually totally in favor of this. The FTC has had regulations on things like celebrity endorsements for decades now, and I believe that helping the consumer know that they are receiving and ad, for which the celebrity has been paid is a good thing.
    03-17-13 08:28 AM
  15. ibpluto's Avatar
    So what happens when a non US celebrity makes a tweet from outside the US that violates their idea of a legal tweet?

    This is jokes.....

    Posted via CB10 from my awesome Z10
    03-17-13 08:31 AM
  16. dbollman423's Avatar
    OK, so a standard that is IMPOSSIBLE to meet in 140 characters and curbs honest opinions and endorsements, solicited or not, should be viewed as a legitimate purpose of the government. And celebrities can't comment on any product without threat of action against them.

    Everytime they use instagram is an endorsement. Everytime they mention an event is an endorsement. Everytime they mention a product is an endorsement. Everytime they talk highly of another celebrity is an endorsement.

    We are not talking about yelling "fire" in a theater or "fighting words" . The rule is overbroad and fails to cite any source of legislative authority to regulate what is said by a celebrity. Not to mention that with Twitter it is more like a subscription in the sense that the majority of individuals receiving tweets have specifically signed up to receive them.

    Sent from my BlackBerry 9930 using Tapatalk
    03-17-13 10:22 AM
  17. Wiki Cydia's Avatar
    OK, so a standard that is IMPOSSIBLE to meet in 140 characters and curbs honest opinions and endorsements, solicited or not, should be viewed as a legitimate purpose of the government. And celebrities can't comment on any product without threat of action against them.
    How does calling an advertisement an advertisement curb "honest opinions"?

    Everytime they use instagram is an endorsement. Everytime they mention an event is an endorsement. Everytime they mention a product is an endorsement. Everytime they talk highly of another celebrity is an endorsement.
    Fair point, but again, the examples cited are of the "I used product X to lose 30 lbs in 6 weeks. Here's the URL" variety, not the "Bieber is so cool!" variety. The former seems specifically intended to send customers towards product, while the latter is merely offering praise.

    We are not talking about yelling "fire" in a theater or "fighting words" . The rule is overbroad and fails to cite any source of legislative authority to regulate what is said by a celebrity. Not to mention that with Twitter it is more like a subscription in the sense that the majority of individuals receiving tweets have specifically signed up to receive them.
    The "fire in a crowded theater" or "fighting words" examples don't belong here, as neither is commercial speech.

    The FTC's "source of legislative authority" is their mandate, which includes "consumer protection" in a broad sense. As an agency to whom authority has been delegated by Congress, they need not cite any additional legislative authority. I agree that the rule may in fact be overbroad, but since the examples you cite are outside the rule, you haven't established that the rule is overbroad.

    As for the "subscription" argument, that's a non issue. I mean, I subscribe to "Flying" magazine, but that doesn't mean the ads that come within it don't have to comport with applicable rules, or that I as a consumer somehow merit less protection because I "signed up" to receive the magazine.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not arguing for this particular rule. But the rule is a simple one: if you're going to advertise on Twitter you still must comply with the rules regarding advertising. Sure, the 140 character limits does limit what advertisers can do, but let's not kid ourselves: that 140 character limit can be changed at any time by Twitter. And, if more characters are necessary for Twitter to protect its ad revenue, they'll simply build in an exception for those tweets. So let's not overstate the alleged "chilling" effect here.

    At the same time, consider this: if advising customers that an ad is an ad is enough to stop an advertiser from running that ad, that's arguably an admission that the goal of the ad was to deceive those who were exposed to it.
    03-17-13 01:20 PM
  18. dbollman423's Avatar
    "How does calling an advertisement an advertisement curb "honest opinions"?"
    Not all endorsements are paid. Some people are touting products they use and like.

    "Fair point, but again, the examples cited are of the "I used product X to lose 30 lbs in 6 weeks. Here's the URL" variety, not the "Bieber is so cool!" variety. The former seems specifically intended to send customers towards product, while the latter is merely offering praise."

    According to the rules, if the celbrity did use and pay for the product then there is no issue (see below). But it is still an endorsement. The article does not differentiate between paid and non-paid endorsements. Every time a celebrity uses twitter it is self promotion, a form of advertisement ("branding"). Every time Ariana Huffington Tweets she has a link to a story in the Huffington Post to promote traffic to her publication. She is not receiving compensation on an ad hoc basis for the number of tweets,or the traffic her tweet generates, but she definitely has "skin in the game."

    Actually, the entire story from CNET is deceptive. Any endorsement of a product is not the issue. Only paid endorsements. They make no differentiation.

    See: When do the Guides apply to endorsements?

    I’ve heard that every time I mention a product on my blog, I have to say whether I got it for free or paid for it myself. Is that true?

    No. If you mention a product you paid for yourself, the Guides aren’t an issue. Nor is it an issue if you get the product for free because a store is giving out free samples to all its customers. The Guides cover only endorsements that are made on behalf of a sponsoring advertiser. For example, an endorsement would be covered by the Guides if an advertiser – or someone working for an advertiser – pays a blogger or gives a blogger something of value to mention a product, including a commission on the sale of a product. Bloggers receiving free products or other perks with the understanding that they’ll promote the advertiser’s products in their blogs would be covered, as would bloggers who are part of network marketing programs where they sign up to receive free product samples in exchange for writing about them or working for network advertising agencies.

    Also: Don’t these guides violate my First Amendment rights?

    If you are acting on behalf of an advertiser, what you are saying is commercial speech – and commercial speech can be regulated under the FTC Act if it’s deceptive.

    So, as long as the ad is not deceptive, even if paid for, it is not against the rule. So if the celebrity did use the product and lost 30 lbs. then the rule would actually not apply.

    The FTC
    03-18-13 12:08 PM

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