City-Journal: Overlawyered’s Walter Olson wrote an excellent article on the FTC’s new ad/testimonial rules. “New guidelines on freebies target bloggers but go easy on traditional outlets. If there was any doubt that sweeping regulation—big, shoot-for-the-moon regulation—was back in favor in Washington, it was laid to rest on October 5, when the Federal Trade Commission published 81 pages of new guidelines asserting authority over product endorsements and testimonials, particularly those published in blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media. From the early coverage, you might have thought the guidelines were mostly of concern to the calculating Madison Avenue types who send baby-product and cosmetics swag to mommy-bloggers as part of nefarious “buzz marketing” campaigns. But the new guidelines are much broader than that. They lay out potential theories of liability for many bloggers and online commentators with more traditional literary, political, or journalistic profiles.”
See the FTC’s new guidelines.
See also Walter Olson’s October 16, 2009, post on this topic.