US regulators will for the first time crack down on bloggers who fail to disclose fees or freebies they get from companies for reviewing products. The Federal Trade Commission, FTC, decided to update its nearly 30 year old guidelines to clarify the law for the vast world of blogging. Offenders could face eventual fines of up to $11,000 (£6,900) per violation.
The updated policy on how advertisers can use endorsements will also apply to celebrities and research firms. Until now, bloggers had not been covered by the guidelines – something which had concerned consumer groups. They had argued that for a long time that the links between some bloggers and companies were not always totally transparent and clear for readers.